LASIK, an acronym for laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis, is the most popular form of laser vision correction worldwide. It has helped millions of people see clearly with little to no dependence on glasses or contact lenses. If you want to wake up and not have to search for your eyeglasses, to swim, ski, and run without glasses or contact lenses, or just be secure knowing you are spectacle-free, LASIK may be for you.
What Is LASIK?
At Eastside Eye Associates, LASIK is an all-laser in-office surgical procedure that reshapes the cornea, the front surface of your eye. Performed just with anesthetic eye drops, LASIK attempts to eliminate or greatly reduce refractive errors such as nearsightedness and astigmatism, and improve your natural, unaided eyesight.
Who Can Get LASIK?
LASIK is not for everyone. To qualify, you should have a stable refractive error with little or no change in prescription for 2 years. You should be free of any active autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis or Chron’s Disease, be free of significant dry eye disease, and have realistic expectations. You should also have a corneal thickness that will permit LASIK.
Other factors that may disqualify you from LASIK include:
- Being under the age of 21
- Pregnancy and nursing
- Other eye conditions (such as keratoconus or irregular astigmatism)
- Other autoimmune diseases (such as lupus, scleroderma, active thyroid disease)
- Thin or unstable corneas
- Previous eye injury
PRK (Photorefractive keratoplasty)
PRK may be a good alternative for those patients not considered a good match for LASIK. In PRK, the correcting laser works on the surface of the cornea, rather than under a flap, as in LASIK. Once the laser treatment is over, generally 20-30 seconds, a special Bandage Soft Contact Lens is placed on the cornea to act as a Band-Aid and to promote healing. The lens is left on 24/7 until the eye heals, usually within a week. The same excimer laser is used both in LASIK and in PRK, and the results of both procedures are virtually the same. The advantages of PRK over LASIK are that it can be done with a thinner cornea than is needed for LASIK and that it eliminates any complications with the flap since in PRK there is no flap. To see which procedure is best for you, speak to one of us at Eastside Eye Associates.
Laser Vision Correction surgery has changed the lives of so many people worldwide. If you’d like to join them, contact Eastside Eye Associates to schedule your consultation!