LASIK is a form of laser vision correction surgery which eliminates the need for glasses and contact lenses in most patients, including patients with astigmatism. LASIK has been performed for over 20 years across the US and the rest of the world, and numerous clinical studies and surveys demonstrated a high rate of satisfaction among patients.
In the early days of LASIK, a microkeratome blade created the incision in the cornea to create the flap. Most refractive surgeons have transitioned to bladeless LASIK. Instead of a microkeratome, a much more precise femtosecond laser creates the corneal flap. The flap is then lifted to expose the underlying corneal layers, or the stroma. Subsequently, the excimer laser precisely reshapes the surface of the cornea. The flap is then put back in place to cover the exposed cornea.
LASIK is a well tolerated procedure, with very little discomfort and fast recovery. Patients can typically return back to work after a brief exam the next day.
At this time, LASIK does not eliminate the need for reading glasses resulting from presbyopia. Presbyopia is a normal part of aging and makes it difficult to focus on near objects. It requires reading glasses for near vision. It usually starts in the mid 40’s regardless whether someone underwent LASIK or not.
To qualify for the procedure, the patients must be at least 18 years old and have stable prescription in their glasses or contact lenses for at least 1 year. The cornea must also have adequate thickness, especially in patients with very strong prescriptions. Patients with certain corneal dystrophies, such as recurrent corneal erosions, or significant dry eye may not be good candidates for LASIK. Patients with keratoconus or suspected of early keratoconus should not undergo LASIK. After a period of time a small portion of patients may regress and may need a mild pair of prescription glasses or laser enhancement.
Matossian Eye Associates offers the best state-of-the-art technology available in the area for LASIK. Not sure what to expect or how you’ll feel during the procedure? Keep reading to learn more about this amazing, life-changing procedure!
What is LASIK?
LASIK is a laser vision correction procedure that permanently corrects refractive errors. This includes nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. LASIK works because it uses two lasers: an excimer laser, and a femtosecond laser.
The femtosecond laser creates a small flap in the cornea. The excimer laser reshapes the cornea and removes tiny amounts of tissue.
By removing these small amounts of corneal tissue, refractive errors can be corrected. After reshaping the cornea and removing enough tissue, the flap is then laid back into place. There are no stitches or bandages necessary since the flap heals on its own.
Who is a Good Candidate for LASIK?
Like any surgical procedure, not everyone is a good candidate for LASIK. There are many factors taken into account, including:
- Age. If you are not at least 18 years old, you cannot get LASIK as mandated by the FDA.
- Health. If you are not in good health and suffer from autoimmune conditions like diabetes, HIV, or Sjogren’s syndrome, you are probably not a good candidate for LASIK.
- Currently pregnant or nursing. If you are pregnant or nursing, you should wait to get LASIK. During pregnancy, hormones can cause your eyes to change. Even if you are nursing, your eyes may need several months before they stabilize.
- Stable Prescription. To get LASIK, you must have a stable prescription. This means that your eyes have not changed for at least a year. Many LASIK surgeons recommend waiting to get LASIK until you are in your mid-twenties for this reason.
- Eyes in good health. Like your health, your eyes also need to be healthy to get LASIK. If you have any conditions like dry eye, they must be under control before getting LASIK. You can’t get LASIK if you have cataracts, glaucoma, or age-related macular degeneration.
- Corneal Thickness. If your corneas are not thick enough, getting LASIK may actually be unsafe. The only way to know if your corneas are the right thickness is to have a LASIK consultation. If your corneas are too thin, you may qualify for another procedure like PRK instead. Having thin corneas is unsafe because removing any tissue during LASIK could cause complications.
These are only some of the many factors taken into account for LASIK candidacy.
What Can I Expect During The LASIK Procedure?
Before the LASIK procedure at Matossian Eye in Hamilton even begins, you’ll receive numbing eye drops. This ensures you’ll never feel any pain during the procedure.
At most, you may feel some slight pressure for a few seconds. The actual procedure only takes a few minutes per eye. You’ll be asked to look at a target light while the LASIK surgeon performs the procedure.
What Is The Recovery Process Like After LASIK?
After having LASIK, it’s normal for your eyes to feel dry, gritty, or irritated. The good news is that these are all temporary feelings that should go away after a few days.
Your vision might be a little blurry as your eyes get used to their new normal. It will continue to improve in the coming days and months.
You’ll need to see your eye doctor at Matossian Eye Associates in Hamilton for a follow-up appointment the day after having LASIK. It’s very important to attend all follow-up appointments at every step of your recovery!
As your eyes continue recovering, you’ll be able to return to most of your everyday activities. For the first month after LASIK, avoid any swimming.
This includes hot tubs, pools, oceans, or lakes. When you take a shower, make sure to keep your eyes closed. Water is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria.
After having LASIK, your eyes will be more susceptible to infection. They will also be more sensitive, so treat them with plenty of care.
Wondering if LASIK could be right for you? Schedule a LASIK consultation with the experts at Matossian Eye Associates! With locations in Doylestown, PA, Hopewell, NJ, and Hamilton, NJ, it’s never been more convenient to make your LASIK dreams a reality!