What is LASIK Eye Surgery
- Laser Eye Procedures - Listed
- Refractive Error Types - Listed
- Before, During & After LASIK - Explained
- LASIK Eye Surgery Results - Explained
- Possible Side Effects - Listed
- Cost of LASIK Eye Surgery
- Best LASIK Surgery Candidates & Patients
- PRK vs. LASIK
LASIK Eye Surgery Step by Step
LASIK eye surgery is the most common elective procedure and is performed to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. In most cases, LASIK is painless and completed within several minutes per eye. The results improve your vision to reduce and in most cases eliminate the need for eyeglasses or contact lenses, and the results of the procedure can usually be noticed within 24 hours. Like most types of refractive surgery, LASIK reshapes the cornea to allow the light entering the eye to be specifically focused on the proper part of the retina to obtain clear vision. There are multiple laser vision correction surgeries available, such as PRK, LASEK, Custom and all-laser Bladeless LASIK. An exam with a LASIK surgeon will determine if LASIK eye surgery is right for you.
Before LASIK Eye Surgery
Your LASIK doctor will perform a dilated eye exam to ensure your eyes are healthy for LASIK eye surgery. The surgeon will evaluate the shape and thickness of your cornea, refractive errors, pupil size and your general overall health to determine if you are candidate for LASIK. The chance of developing dry eyes will also be evaluated, and a treatment plan may be recommended to reduce your risk of developing dry eyes after LASIK surgery. If you are having Custom LASIK you likely will have a 3D image of your eye, referred to as Wavefront analysis, which creates a more precise map of overall aberrations affecting your vision. Because contact lenses alter the natural shape of your eye, you will be asked to stop wearing contacts for a specified period of time prior to your surgery date. Typically the time to remove soft contact lenses is 1-2 weeks and hard contacts can be up to 4 weeks; your LASIK surgeon will advise how long to stay out of your contacts during your consultation.
How is LASIK EYE Surgery Performed?
Prior to your LASIK eye surgery, numbing eye drops are used to alleviate any discomfort to the eye. Some surgeons may also prescribe medication to help you relax. LASIK eye surgery requires only topical anesthetic drops, and no stitches are required to heal. Your eye will be positioned under the laser, and an instrument called a lid speculum is used to keep your eyelids open. Your LASIK surgeon will use either an instrument called a microkeratome or a laser to create a thin semi-circular flap in the cornea on the surface of the eye. The surgeon will then use the excimer laser to treat your specific prescription by utilizing a cool ultraviolet beam of light to reshape the cornea. This allows light entering the eye to be refocused for more accurate vision. The surgery is painless; however you may feel some pressure on your eyes. LASIK is performed on each eye independently with the entire surgery taking only several minutes. After the laser reshapes the cornea, the flap is repositioned and serves as a natural bandage for the healing process.
After LASIK Eye Surgery
Following LASIK Eye Surgery, you will need someone to drive you home. You may experience a temporary itching sensation in your eyes and should expect some blurry vision or haziness immediately after surgery, which generally lasts 8-12 hours. The next day your vision and clarity should continue to improve. Most people return to work and drive themselves to their follow up appointment the very next day. Additionally, the majority of doctors request an additional follow up exam 2-4 weeks after the LASIK eye surgery and 1-3 months after LASIK eye surgery.
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