Lasik- Frequently Asked Questions

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

How old do I have to be for laser vision correction?
You need to be over 18 years of age, and your Glasses or Contact Lenses prescription should not have changed in the last year. If your eye is still changing from year to year, you should not have the procedure until the Cornea is stable.

Isn't all laser vision correction the same?
No. Many of the discount LASIK centres want you to believe that LASIK should be purchased like a commodity and that Surgeon experience, lasers, diagnostic technology and follow-up care don't matter. Laser vision correction will affect the way you see for the rest of your life. You should make your decision to have laser vision carefully, not quickly.

What are the diagnostic tests done before one can undergo LASIK procedure?
Besides routine eye examination two preoperative tests viz. Topography Test & Pachymetry Test need to be performed. Topography Test is done to map the refractive power of the Cornea and to rule out certain corneal conditions like conical Cornea, etc. The Pachymetry Test is done to measure the thickness of the Cornea.

Will the procedure hurt?
There is no pain during any of the laser vision procedures since anesthetic eye drops numb your eyes.

Will I need Glasses after LASIK?
If thoroughly evaluated and performed in the right candidate with the latest technology, patients who have LASIK do not generally require Glasses for most activities. When you come for a consultation to our Doctor, he will best advice on the same.

If I choose to have mono-vision, does that mean I'll never need reading Glasses?
The benefit to having mono-vision is that there won't be a complete dependence on Glasses for close vision. Many who have mono-vision are able to see well enough both at distance and near to do things at any age without corrective lenses.

Can I have both eyes operated upon at the same time?
This is what we recommend. It has been demonstrated in several large, clinical studies that LASIK's results and safety are identical whether the procedure is reformed on both eyes simultaneously versus one eye at a time. Most patients elect to have both eyes operated upon the same day out of convenience, less time out of work, and avoiding imbalance between the two eyes.

How long does the procedure take?
Once in the laser room your eyes will be cleaned and prepared for surgery. The surgery itself usually only takes five minutes or so per eye, however the preparation process of surgery may vary between 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on technology and procedure chosen. For the exact process Click here.

What keeps the flap in position?
Following your procedure, the flap stays in position without the need for stitches. Initially, there is a vacuum effect created by the cells lining the inner surface of the Cornea. As the eye heals over the first few days, the epithelium (the outer surface of the Cornea) seals the edges of the flap.

Will I have 20/20 vision following laser vision correction?
The goal of any Refractive surgical procedure is to reduce/eliminate your dependence on corrective lenses. The vast majorities of our patients are extremely happy with their results and can do most activities without dependence on corrective lenses after laser vision correction. Our surgeons always aim to provide 20/20 vision following laser vision correction.

Is laser vision correction safe?
If your eyes qualify for laser vision correction, then the procedure is safe.
How long will the results of the surgery last? Laser vision correction is considered to be permanent. If you're over 40 years of age, you may want to consider monovision.

What if I move my eye during the laser treatment?
While the treatment is performed, you will be asked to look at a light under the laser. You are required to look steadily at the light throughout the operation, since this keeps the eye centered under the laser. However, if you temporarily look away or lose the ability to look at the fixation light, do not be concerned. The WaveLight Allegretto Laser is equipped with a special eye tracker that tracks the eye at 400 times a second throughout the procedure.

Do I have to go without my contacts before having laser vision correction?
If you are wearing hard or gas permeable contacts, it's important that you remove them at least three weeks prior to your treatment. Soft lenses should be out for at least one week before your treatment. Soft toric lenses may need to be out longer. Your Doctor will advise you how long you need to be out of your contacts prior to your surgery.

Does LASIK cause dry eye?
Following a LASIK procedure, every patient has temporary dry eye, which can be treated most often with artificial tears. This dry eye sensation usually clears up in one to three weeks.

Patients with pre-existing dry eye should discuss it with the Doctor at the pre-op examination. A thorough evaluation of your current medications, medical history and work environment should all be taken into account.

What will my recovery be like?
All LASIK patients usually see quite well the day following their procedure and are able to resume most of their normal daily activities. Patients with higher prescriptions may recover slightly slowly.

Can I have laser vision correction while I am pregnant or trying to conceive?

Does insurance cover this procedure?
No, insurance does not cover this procedure as it is considered primarily cosmetic.

Can I drive home after the surgery?
We recommend you should not drive immediately after the surgery. For the first couple of hours your eyes will be sensitive to light and the vision blurred, so you should wear the special dark Glasses to protect your eyes.

I have a "lazy" eye; can I still have LASIK to correct myopia?
Many patients with lazy eye have enjoyed their results following LASIK because they no longer need Glasses or Contact Lenses to achieve their best acuity.

My child has Keratoconus and I would like to know if he is a candidate for laser eye surgery.
Laser vision correction is not suggested for patients with Keratoconus. However, it is important to treat this condition to prevent it from progressing. Our very sensitive topolyzer grades the keratoconus and gives us the right treatment plan and rigid contact lens fit.


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