Before a LASIK procedure

Prior to performing LASIK, your eye surgeon will take comprehensive measurements of your eye and evaluate your eye’s general health. Prior to the surgery, you may be recommended to take a little sedative. Eye-numbing drops will be delivered after you are lying comfortably on a surgical table. Then, he or she will precisely modify the curvature of your cornea using a specialized sort of cutting laser. Each laser pulse removes a little piece of corneal tissue, enabling your eye surgeon to either flatten or steepen the curvature of your cornea.

Typically, the surgeon will form a flap in the cornea and then elevate it up to reshape it. Additionally, there are variants in which a very thin flap is raised or in which no flap is formed at all. Each strategy has its own set of benefits and drawbacks.

Individual eye surgeons may be experts in a particular form of laser eye surgery. The distinctions between them are often slight, and none is unquestionably superior than the others. You may want to investigate the following options, depending on your unique circumstances and preferences:

  • In situ keratomileusis facilitated by laser (LASIK). LASIK, which is now the most frequently done laser eye surgery, involves producing a partial-thickness corneal flap and ablation of the corneal bed using an excimer laser. After that, the flap is repositioned in its initial position. There is little discomfort after surgery, and eyesight recovery often occurs within one to two days.
  • Keratectomy photorefractive (PRK). Rather of creating a flap, PRK scrapes away the top layer of the skin (epithelium). This corneal abrasion takes three to four days to heal, and in the near term, causes mild discomfort and impaired vision.These disadvantages were believed to be balanced by the potential benefit of PRK being safer for those who are more likely to be hit in the eye, such as those active in contact sports, law enforcement, or the military. However, since the risk of eyeball rupture is so minimal even with normal LASIK, there is likely no meaningful benefit to PRK. Additionally, lasik is a more effective treatment option than PRK for extreme nearsightedness (myopia).
  • Subepithelial keratectomy performed with the aid of a laser (LASEK). LASEK procedure is comparable to LASIK, except the flap is formed using a specialized cutting equipment (microkeratome) and ethanol exposure of the cornea. Because the treatment enables the surgeon to remove less of the cornea, it is an excellent alternative for those with thin corneas. LASEK has no substantial benefits over LASIK in those who are more susceptible to eye damage. learn more the differences between lasek and lasik at https://www.carecredit.com/well-u/health-wellness/lasik-vs-lasek
  • In situ keratomileusis using an epithelial laser (epi-LASIK). During an epi-LASIK operation, your surgeon uses a mechanical blunt blade instrument (epikeratome) to separate the epithelium from the cornea’s middle layer (stroma) and then reshapes the cornea using a laser. Similar to LASEK, this technique is non-invasive. learn more about epi-lasik by clicking here
  • Lenticule extraction through micro-incision (SMILE). This more recent technique of refractive surgery reshapes the cornea by creating a lens-shaped pocket of tissue (lenticule) under the cornea’s surface using a laser. The lenticule is then removed via a very tiny incision after it has been utilized to reshape the cornea.
  • Lenses placed intraocularly. To enhance vision, corrective lenses (intraocular lenses) may be surgically implanted in the eye. This procedure is performed commonly after cataract surgery (in which the old, cloudy natural lens is removed). Additionally, it may be a viable option to LASIK for elderly persons who may eventually need cataract surgery.
  • Intraocular lenses may also be provided to younger patients with severe nearsightedness who are unable to be treated successfully with corrective lenses. However, for the majority of individuals, they are not a standard choice.
  • Bioptics is a term that refers to the treatment of nearsightedness or farsightedness using a combination of procedures such as intraocular lenses and LASIK.

Your eyesight is in good condition.

Laser eye surgery is often recommended for patients who have a modest degree of refractive error and no unique visual difficulties.

Your eye surgeon will ask extensive questions about your eye health and do an examination of your eyes to ensure that you do not have any problems that might result in surgery-related complications or poor results. Among them are: 

  • Keratoconus, an eye condition that causes progressive vision loss and corneal thinning. Indeed, if you have keratoconus in your family, even if you do not have it, use extreme caution when considering elective eye surgery.
  • Inflammation of the eye (such as keratitis or uveitis) or infection of the eye (such as herpes simplex).
  • Trauma to the eye or abnormalities of the eyelids.
  • Eyes that are dry It is important to understand that LASIK surgery may exacerbate dry eyes if you already have them.
  • Pupils that are large If your pupils are very big, particularly in low light, LASIK may not be an option. Glare, halos, starbursts, and ghost images may all be devastating side effects after surgery.
  • Glaucoma. The surgical operation may result in an increase in intraocular pressure, aggravating glaucoma.
  • Cataracts.

Additionally, you may choose to reconsider LASIK if you: 

  • Have severe nearsightedness or have been diagnosed with a high refractive error. The advantages of LASIK surgery may be insufficient to outweigh the dangers.
  • Your eyesight (on the whole) is quite good. If your vision is good enough that you only use contacts or glasses occasionally, the benefits of surgery may outweigh the risks.
  • You’ve developed age-related changes in your eyes, resulting in less-than-perfect vision (presbyopia).
  • You engage in physical contact sports on a regular basis. If you often sustain blows to the face and eyes, such as when participating in martial arts or boxing, LASIK surgery may not be an appropriate option for you.

How healthy are you?

Additionally, your eye surgeon will ask thorough health-related inquiries. Certain unrelated medical disorders might enhance the risks associated with LASIK surgery or make the result less predictable. 

  • Any illness or condition that compromises your immune system, inhibits your capacity to recover, or makes you more susceptible to infections, such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, HIV, and other autoimmune diseases.
  • Any time you are on an immunosuppressive medicine.
  • Uncontrolled diabetes increases your chance of developing problems such as diabetic retinopathy.

Is the clarity of your vision unflinching?

If you have myopia, your vision may continue to deteriorate throughout your adolescent years, or even longer, necessitating frequent adjustments to your glasses or contact lenses prescription. Thus, anyone seeking LASIK eye surgery should be at least 18 years old, preferably older.

Certain medical conditions and medicines – pregnancy, nursing, and steroid medications — might cause temporary visual changes. Before pursuing LASIK eye surgery, wait until your eyesight has stabilized.

Is it financially feasible?

The majority of insurance companies consider laser eye surgery to be an elective operation and hence do not pay the cost. Be aware of the expense of the procedure.