Laser eye surgery

Being able to see properly is one of the most crucial parts of life. For some this may require glasses or contacts to be worn in order to see the world more clearly. With today’s medical advances the option of laser eye surgery can be quite enticing to a lot of people, however not everyone is a candidate for this type of medical procedure.

It is important to take a look at the different types of laser eye surgeries and also important to see if your type of vision can even be repaired by laser eye surgery. First let us talk about the types of laser eye surgery. The most commonly discussed laser eye surgery is LASIK. Lasik is performed for people who suffer from nearsightedness. With this procedure the surgeon uses a knife or microkeratome to cut a bit of the corneal tissue to create a flap. Then he will remove some of the tissue beneath the flap with a laser and ends by replacing the cut flap. With this particular procedure it is very important to know your surgeon is well skilled in his field since he will need to make an accurate incision of the cornea. Lasik surgery seems to offer good results with little side effects and healing time is very quick.

Another laser eye surgery is PRK or photorefractive keratectomy. This is a newer surgery that is taking the place of a lot of the Lasik procedures because it can be used to correct nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and distorted vision (astigmatism). This is an outpatient procedure that usually is over and done within a few short minutes. With some local anesthetic drops in the eyes you will not feel any pain and the work is all done by a laser controlled by computer. This laser is so accurate and there is little room for error. Patients that undergo this procedure are typically back to their normal routines within one to three days afterwards. Often there may be a slight haze over the eye for up to a week which is part of the normal healing process. Some patients did have some mild side effects resulting from the procedure however most of them had faded within 6 months.

The problem with laser eye surgery is that most advertisements have misled everyone into thinking that this will answer their prayers and they will never need to wear another pair of glasses again. This is just not the case for everyone. Often times people who suffer from an extensive eye refractive error, are not able to gain full freedom from their glasses or contacts after their procedure. They may need a lighter prescription or maybe they will just need to wear glasses for distance but the possibility is still there. Everyone going into the procedure should be made aware of their chance for success with this procedure.

As with any type of procedure it is extremely important to find a surgeon that is highly trained in this field. When it comes to your vision there is no room for errors. There have been cases in which people have left the procedure room with worse vision then they started with. This is very uncommon but should be discussed. Also not everyone experiences amazing and obvious results immediately following the laser treatments. It can take up to 6 weeks to see the full benefits of the laser eye surgery. If you decide to go ahead with either the PRK or the Lasik procedure it is important to discuss all your questions and concerns with your doctor prior to surgery so you know exactly what to expect afterwards.

Last updated on May 3rd, 2009 and filed under Vision Care. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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