LASIK stands for laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis. It is commonly used to correct nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism. It involves cutting a thin flap in the patient’s cornea with a microkeratome blade or femtosecond laser. The cornea is reshaped to match a pre-determined pattern to improve eyesight.
Does LASIK Surgery Work?
Britain’s National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence reported as far back as 2006 that LASIK surgery is “safe and efficacious for use in appropriately selected patients.” Surveys conducted on post-surgery patients indicate a 92% to 98% satisfaction rate. A small percentage of patients require additional surgery due to over or under correction during their initial procedure. For many, LASIK proves to be an effective alternative to wearing contacts and eyeglasses and has been safe and effective.
What Are the Risks of LASIK Surgery?
Most patients experience no complications during or after LASIK surgery. That being said, every surgical procedure has some risk. Common complications and side effects include:
- Dry Eyes – This side effect is usually temporary and is reported by about half of patients who underwent LASIK.
- Infection – Patients should follow through with all post-operative appointments to monitor for infection.
- Regression – Some patients notice a regression of vision after the procedure. This may be corrected with additional surgery.
- Keratoectasia – This condition can cause blurry vision and occurs in patients with underlying corneal disease.
- Glare & Halos – Glare and halos in night vision may be noticed. This side effect usually fades in time.
- Flap Complications – Flap complications can happen if the area is rubbed, bumped, or injured while healing.
- Vision Complications – Vision complications are very rare but can happen. Patients should choose a qualified surgeon that uses modern methods to ensure good results.
- Residual Refractive Error – This condition can be corrected with follow-up procedures, usually referred to as an “enhancement.”
If you are curious about the benefits and risks of LASIK, now is a great time to learn more. Call Eye Michigan and make an appointment with one of their board certified, experienced ophthalmologists to schedule a consultation.
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