If you are considering LASIK surgery, chances are that you have a ton of questions on the topic. The most common questions and answers have been compiled below to aid you in your research.
What is LASIK?
LASIK is a surgical procedure where the physician will utilize a special laser to actually reshape the cornea. The result of this is an increase in eye-focusing power. LASIK is surgery, so it is important that you do extensive research to choose the best LASIK surgeon and the best LASIK surgery center.
Does LASIK hurt?
The eye and cornea are anesthetized before the LASIK surgeon performs the procedure, so the pain and discomfort is minimized. The majority of patients will not experience any pain or discomfort. Some patients will report feeling a “scratchy feeling” during the procedure. When the anesthesia wears off, there may be some minor discomfort and this will vary from patient to patient. Light sensitivity is common and will usually last for several days.
What if I flinch or blink or move my head during the LASIK procedure?
This is actually the question that is asked most often during the initial appointment with the LASIK surgeon. The LASIK surgeon is typically very well trained in this area and when you move your head, they will lift their foot off the “pedal” and realign the ultraviolet beam to the target.
How long does it take?
The actual LASIK surgery is very quick, usually lasting about 30 seconds. It is unbelievable to think that your vision can be improved so dramatically in less than a minute. In most cases you will be able to leave the LASIK surgery center thirty to forty minutes after the procedure.
When can I go back to work?
The answer depends on the patient. It is best to return to work when you feel good enough to return to normal activities. The average time is around two days, with some returning the day after. Others like waiting three to four days. It is common for people to schedule the procedure on a Friday morning, take the day off from work, recover on the weekend, and return to work on Monday.
Is LASIK surgery permanent?
After compiling results from a variety of clinical trials, the results do appear to be permanent. It is important to note that as people age, their eyes will change and it may be necessary to undergo additional treatments.
Do I have to limit my activities after surgery?
Typically, the patient is free to resume normal activities as soon as they feel comfortable after surgery. Of course, you also want to follow your doctor’s advice. And, utilize some common sense by not driving right after the procedure.
Am I a candidate for laser vision correction?
We recommend that you find a LASIK surgery clinic in your area for an evaluation. When you bring your glasses or prescription, your doctor will determine if a refractive procedure will offer you any benefit. During your consultation, the doctor typically will perform a computerized imaging of the cornea in order to determine its curvature.
Laser vision correction has been shown to reduce people’s dependency for glasses and contact lenses. Over 95% of the treated patients will achieve 20/40 vision or better. This will usually enable you to pass a driver’s license eye examination without glasses or contact lenses.
Will I need glasses or contact lenses after the procedure?
LASIK and PRK are designed to eliminate your dependency on glasses and contact lenses. Patients may need glasses for reading, night driving, or other specific tasks depending on age. Most patients can do most things without glasses or contacts after the procedure.
How long does the procedure take?
You will be at the laser center for approximately two hours. The time in the treatment room for about 15 minutes. The actual laser treatment time is approximately one minute.
What kind of vision can I expect after the procedure?
Most patients achieve improved vision in the first 24 hours after the procedure and are functional without their corrective lenses at the one-day post procedure examination. Patients continue to see a gradual increase in their vision during the first week after the procedure.
Will I miss work?
Most patients return to their normal activities, including work, the day following the procedure.
Are the procedures painful?
The procedures are performed using topical anesthetic eye drops and are, therefore, not painful. There may be some discomfort after the procedure when the anesthesia wears off. Eye drops are prescribed to minimize this discomfort.
How can I find out if I am a candidate and which procedure is best for me?
The doctors at your local LASIK surgery center will evaluate your situation and will discuss with you the options that are available.
Hopefully these answers have helped you to get a good basic understanding of LASIK surgery and the LASIK surgery procedure. While investigating this procedure, keep in mind that selecting the right LASIK surgery center and the best LASIK surgeon can make all the difference.