LASIK surgery, which is also known as LASIK eye surgery, is one of the popular eye correction operations that is preferred worldwide. The term LASIK stands for laser-assisted in situ keratomileuses. Every year this operation helps millions of people to get rid of their contact lenses and glasses. Just like most of the other eye surgeries, this operation has also advantages and risks. This is why we have decided to prepare an article for our readers to inform them about every possible thing regarding this operation. Below, you are going to find plenty of useful information that you need to know about this popular surgery.
What Is LASIK Surgery?
LASIK surgery is one of the widely preferred operations that help numerous people to see better again. This operation is performed for different purposes and locations on the eye. In general, a special cutting laser is utilized to change the shape of your eye tissue around the cornea. Depending on the type of operation, the intervention area may change. However, only one thing is aimed at all of these operations which are improving the vision of the patients. It is a widely performed operation which is available in all countries.
Why Is LASIK Surgery Required?
As we mentioned before, this operation is carried out for the correction of the vision of the patients. This and other similar procedures are usually preferred for three main vision problems. These are myopia, which is also known as nearsightedness, hyperopia, which is also known as farsightedness, and astigmatism. Many people prefer LASIK surgery for astigmatism because the low number of operations that can be carried out for astigmatism is quite low. We have discussed LASIK for astigmatism in detail in one of our articles. We highly recommend you read this article to get more information on this topic.
What Are the Risks for LASIK Surgery?
Just like in all eye operations, LASIK
surgery has also some risks that patients need to know before deciding on
this operation. This may be a quite practical and easy operation; however, our
eyes are our most vulnerable organs. Thus, there are a set of risks that you
need to know before having this surgery. Although it is very rare, some
patients may experience a permanent loss of vision. On the other hand, there
are some LASIK complications which are quite common. If you are going to
have this operation soon, it is highly possible for you to experience some of
the following LASIK side effects in the following:
Most of the side effects and complications you are going to experience after LASIK surgery are temporary. They will fade out in a short time between 2 and 4 weeks. One of the most common LASIK complications is eye dryness. Patients usually experience a decrease in their tear production after the surgery. This is a common side effect that usually takes about six months to fully recover. This is why most of the doctors recommend special eye drops for the patients.
Without a doubt, this complication can affect the quality of the vision. In rare cases, eye dryness can be permanent as well. If this will be the case, you may need to have another operation on your tear ducts to fix the problem. Moreover, another common LASIK side effect is double vision. This may also include glares and halos as well. Most of the patients will not be able to see well without natural light. However, this will take about a few weeks. Patients will experience halos, glares, or double vision under the artificial lighting for a while after the LASIK surgery.
In addition to these, some patients will not be able to achieve the desired results with a single LASIK surgery. In these cases, patients will undergo a second operation which is known as under correction. If your doctor will remove less tissue than he or she needs to, you will experience vision problems. However, patients need to wait for at least two years for the next surgery in their eye. This is why it is quite important to prefer reputable hospitals, clinics, and doctors in your operation. This kind of second surgery is more common in LASIK for myopia.
On the other hand, you may need a second operation which is known as the overcorrection. This is the operation that is performed when your doctor will remove more tissue than he or she needs to. As you can guess, the correction is more challenging in this operation type when compared to the under-correction operations. Patients may also suffer astigmatism after LASIK surgery. This is mainly because your doctor will remove uneven tissue from your eye. If this will be the case, you can still prefer LASIK for astigmatism operation. However, you may need to wear contact lenses or glasses until your next operation which means that you have to wait for 2 years.
Infections are one of the most common LASIK complications. Your flap must be removed during the operation and as a result, your eye will be vulnerable to infections and other kinds of complications. Some people may even experience excess tears after the LASIK surgery. Your cornea may heal abnormally after the operation since it will stay underneath your flap. One of the rare complications is known as regression. This refers to the event which means that operation was not useful for the patient. As we mentioned at the beginning, there is a slim risk that you may permanently lose your vision as well.
Who Should Not Prefer LASIK Surgery?
Just like most of the surgeries, there is a
certain risk group who should not prefer LASIK surgery. Your doctor will
interview you in advance to figure out whether you are eligible for the
operation or not. However, we would like to share some of these health
conditions with our readers. This operation is not recommended for people with
autoimmune disorders. In addition to this, those who have a weakened immune
system are not suitable for any operation unless there is no other way than the
surgery. Since this operation is carried out for the correction of vision,
people with such problems will not be eligible for them.
If you already have dry eyes, then LASIK surgery will not be recommended for you. Dry eye is one of the most common LASIK complications and it may cause severe damage to your eyes. Another common criterion is the recent changes in your body. If you are using certain medications, pregnant, breastfeeding or elderly person then this operation will not be recommended for you. Moreover, if you already have problems in your eyes such as lid or cornea disorders, glaucoma or cataracts, you will not be able to have this operation too.
How Are the Results of LASIK Surgery?
LASIK surgery can help you to get rid of your contact lenses and glasses in a
single day. The success rate of the operation is 80% and those who undergo this
operation regain 80% and more vision. Of course, just like in all surgeries,
you will need some time to recover. The results of the surgery may vary
depending on the severity of your problem as well as many other factors. If you
have low degree eye problems, then you have a higher chance to achieve
successful results. Those who have high degree eye problems can still benefit
from this operation however the results will not be predictable as in low
As we mentioned before, some patients may
need a second operation for correction. This is why it is very important to
choose reputable doctors and hospitals to have this surgery. In some rare
cases, the patient may experience regression. This is mainly because of poor
care after the surgery. Patients who will follow the instructions of their
doctors will have a lower chance to experience such unwanted conditions. Again,
in rare cases, LASIK surgery may lead to other eye problems such as
cataracts. It will be wise to get in touch with your doctor often for each
symptom you experience after the operation.
How Should You Prepare for LASIK Surgery?
There are certain things that you need to
pay attention to before going to the hospital for the LASIK surgery.
First of all, you need to know that most of the insurances do not cover this
operation. It will be wise to separate enough budget for all kinds of possible
complications and their treatments. Since this is eye surgery, you will not be
able to drive for a while after the surgery. Therefore, you must come to the
hospital with one of your relatives or friends who will take care of you after
the surgery and will take you home.
Your doctor will discuss the medications you are currently using. You may have to stop taking some of the medications for a while before and after the LASIK surgery. In addition to this, it is not recommended to wear makeup before the surgery. It will be great if you will stop wearing makeup 3 days before the operation date. In addition to this, you should get prepared for the special care routines that you will have to apply after the surgery. Your doctor will be informed about all the details you need to know before and after the operation. There is no need to mention, however, you must pay utmost attention to the care of your eyes in line with the instructions provided by your doctor.
How Long Does LASIK Surgery Take?
In general, LASIK surgery is a quick
and easy operation that is carried out on your eyes. The average duration of
the surgery is about 30 minutes but most of the operations are completed less
than 30 minutes. You will lie on a reclining chair during the operation and
your doctors will give you medicine to relax. Numbing drops will be placed in
your eye to make sure that you will not move your eyes during the operation and
cause any complications. After waiting for a few minutes after the numbing
drops, your operation will be initiated.
What Should You Expect During LASIK Surgery?
Once you are ready for the operation and
your eyes numb, your doctor will take you under the laser. He or she will keep
your eyelids wide open with a special tool which is known as lid speculum. Your
doctor will mark your cornea before creating a flap on your eye. In addition to
this, a special tool which is called suction ring will be applied to your eye
in order to prevent possible eye movements for the success of the operation.
Once your flap will be created, the laser machine will be adjusted, and your
real operation will be initiated. This procedure usually takes about 5 to 10
Your doctor will ask you to focus on a
special light that will be in front of you for a while. While you are focusing
on this light, the laser machine will start to work on your cornea and send
light pulses. You are not going to feel any ache or pain during the operation.
It is a completely pain-free operation. However, some patients may feel some
kind of pressure on their eye during the LASIK surgery. You will be
hearing steady clicking while the laser is working on your eye. It will be
worth to note that the operation is carried out on a single eye at a time.
How Much LASIK Surgery Costs?
In general, the average cost of LASIK surgery is around $4000. However, the prices may vary depending on the doctor, clinic, and/or hospital. Another factor that may affect the price is your condition and the type of operation you are going to undergo. Some operations such as LASIK for astigmatism is more challenging than regular operation. Therefore, you may expect a little bit higher prices depending on the type and difficulty of the operation. The average $4000 we mentioned includes all operations and treatments that you will have to undergo before and after the procedure.
Laser Surgery Recovery (American Academy Of Ophthalmology)
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