The Complete Patient Guide to LASIK Eye Surgery

Welcome to our “Complete Patient Guide to LASIK Eye Surgery”.

If you’re considering LASIK, this comprehensive guide will tell you everything you need to know about the procedure. We’ll discuss topics such as:

  • What is LASIK?
  • Who’s a Good Candidate For LASIK?
  • Risks & Benefits
  • What To Expect Before, During, and After Your Procedure
  • What to Look For In a Surgeon

Let’s get started…

What is LASIK Eye Surgery?

LASIK (Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis) is a popular refractive surgery procedure that can correct common vision problems such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. It utilizes advanced laser technology to reshape the cornea, allowing light to focus correctly onto the retina, resulting in improved vision.

The changes LASIK makes to the cornea are permanent. This allows for long-lasting freedom from glasses and contacts for millions of patients.

LASIK has been around for over 30 years. Like all technology, diagnostic and laser treatment technology for LASIK has advanced tremendously. LASIK is safer and more precise than ever before.

Millions of patients have had LASIK worldwide. Let’s review everything you need to know about it.

Am I a Candidate for LASIK?

Modern LASIK is one of the safest, most effective, most precise & consistent procedures in all of medicine – if you are a good candidate!

Am I a Candidate for LASIK

Decades of research combined with modern diagnostic technology have made it easier for doctors to determine who is a good candidate and who is not.

Determining your candidacy for LASIK involves several factors. It is crucial to consult with an experienced eye care professional who will evaluate your individual case. Here are the key considerations:

Age and Prescription:

LASIK is typically performed on individuals who are at least 18 years old and have a stable eyeglass or contact lens prescription. LASIK can treat nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism.

For nearsighted patients with a thick enough cornea, and other safe parameters, LASIK can be used to treat over 10 diopters of myopia. However, many patients do not have corneas that are thick enough to safely treat prescriptions that high.

The higher your prescription, the more your cornea must be thinned. Therefore, your prescription must be considered in the context of your corneal measurements.

Vision Stability:

Your vision prescription should have remained relatively stable for at least a year before considering LASIK. Fluctuations in your prescription may affect the accuracy of the surgical outcome.

Corneal Health:

Your cornea plays a vital role in LASIK eye surgery. It should be healthy and have sufficient thickness for the procedure. Your eye care professional will assess the corneal health and thickness during the initial consultation.

General Eye Health:

A comprehensive eye examination will be conducted to evaluate your overall eye health. Conditions such as cataracts, severe dry eye syndrome, or other eye diseases might impact your eligibility for LASIK.

Pregnancy and Nursing:

If you are currently pregnant or nursing, it is advisable to postpone LASIK eye surgery. Hormonal changes during pregnancy and breastfeeding can affect the stability of your vision, making it difficult to determine accurate treatment plans.

The LASIK Procedure: What to Expect

Understanding the LASIK procedure and what to expect during and after the surgery can help alleviate any concerns or anxieties you may have.

You can be rest assured that you’re in good company though – It has been estimated that 30 million people have been successfully treated with laser eye surgery.

Additionally, modern LASIK uses lasers only which are completely painless. The procedure is more gentle and comfortable than ever before.

Here is a breakdown of the LASIK process:

Pre-Operative Evaluation:

Before the surgery, you will undergo a comprehensive eye examination, including measurements of your cornea, prescription, and general eye health. This evaluation helps determine the appropriate treatment plan for your individual needs.

Surgical Procedure:

During LASIK, a thin flap is created on the cornea using a microkeratome or a femtosecond laser. The flap is then gently lifted, and an excimer laser is used to reshape the underlying corneal tissue. The flap is carefully repositioned, and it adheres naturally without the need for sutures.

Immediate Recovery and Post-Operative Care:

Following LASIK, you may experience some mild discomfort or irritation in your eyes, which usually subsides within a few days. Your eye care professional will provide detailed instructions for post-operative care, including the use of prescribed eye drops, artificial tear eye drops, and avoiding certain activities during the healing process.

Benefits and Risks of LASIK Eye Surgery

LASIK eye surgery offers several benefits, including:

Clearer Vision:

The primary goal of LASIK is to reduce or eliminate the need for glasses or contact lenses, resulting in improved vision for most patients.
LASIK success rates are extremely high for good candidates.

Freedom from Contacts & Glasses:

LASIK’s success means that patients become from from glasses and contacts.

Contact lenses are one of the most common causes for cornea infections and permanent vision loss in 18-45 year olds. Contact lens infections can be blinding. The risk of contact lens infections and permanent vision loss has been reported to be much higher than LASIK or any laser vision correction procedure.

Being free from contacts means being free from the risk of contact-lens related infections.

Quick Results and Fast Recovery:

Many patients experience improved vision within a day or two after LASIK, with minimal downtime required for recovery.

Most patients are able to drive comfortably and safely the very next day after the procedure, and return to work or school.

Long-lasting Results:

LASIK provides long-lasting vision correction for many individuals, allowing them to enjoy clear vision for years to come.

Risks of LASIK Eye Surgery:

However, it is essential to be aware of the potential risks and complications associated with LASIK, such as infection, surgical temporary ocular discomfort syndrome (STODS) and overcorrections/ undercorrections. Your eye care professional will discuss these risks with you during the consultation.

Choosing a Surgeon and Preparation Tips

Selecting a qualified and experienced LASIK surgeon is crucial for a successful outcome. Consider the following tips when choosing a surgeon:

Choosing a Surgeon and Preparation Tips

Do They Only Perform LASIK?

While LASIK is amazing – It’s not the best procedure for everyone. There are different types of corrective eye surgeries. Therefore, we strongly recommend choosing a surgeon who performs all of the 3 major areas of refractive surgery:

1.) Laser Vision Correction (e.g. LASIK, PRK, and/or SMILE)
3.) Custom Lens Replacement

While many patients are great LASIK candidates, you don