Vision correction has seen a dramatic transformation in last 600 years when eyeglasses were introduced first. Right from old-fashioned monocles, bifocal, auto-correction progressive lenses, and contact lenses, now we have advanced optical surgeries like LASIK. All work with the same objective, restoration of normal eyesight. Contrary to common belief, it is not that new procedure. In fact, it has a history of more than three decades. However, it became safe and more accessible in last few years. LASIK is a generalized treatment for overcoming vision problems like farsightedness, astigmatism, and farsightedness. Since it is a painless, effective and statistically proven procedure, more people opt for it. As per eye-specialists, it is a two-step procedure.
Step 1: Eye surgeons make a small flap in the surface of the cornea using a Femtosecond Laser or an oscillating Micro keratome blade. The first technique is largely preferred by specialists because it is relatively safer than the latter one.
Step 2: Another Laser reshapes the cornea by focusing below the corneal flap created in the first step. This laser is called Excimer Laser used for remodeling the cornea surface so that the curvature changes. It results in the change of lens power. It takes around 10 to 15 minutes. Doctors set the cornea flap back at the place, and the recovery process starts.
The majority of patients achieve significant vision correction within 24 hours; the eyesight remains blurry for a few days though. In some patients who suffer from severe Astigmatism, recovery period may be longer. A few discomforts remain for a few days or weeks depending on individual health conditions. The experience is just ‘life-changing’ for many of them.
Eye specialists look at the stability of the eyes. Other eye diseases, condition of the cornea, and age are critical parameters. It is highly important that the eye surgeon is proficient in determining eligibility for LASIK surgery. Remember, it is a crucial deciding factor. Since a thorough screening (and correct interpretation) reduces the risk of complications, the more experienced a surgeon is lesser are the chances of error.
They perform a series of tests to determine who is a suitable candidate for LASIK procedure. A patient with a constant state of eye can only go ahead. It is highly important that the vision doesn’t show deterioration, but a steady condition. Sometimes eye appears healthy externally, but with hidden problem that get surfaced during the treatment.
Is there any need of follow-up post-treatment?
No surgery in the world is without risks. The best thing about LASIK is, it is a knife-free surgery. Therefore, risk reduces proportionately. In fact, doctors call it one of the safest procedures today. Patients need to do a thorough research before crystallizing on a particular doctor.
Like any other medical procedure, LASIK procedure can also create complications in a few cases, or there may be a requirement of glasses in spite of surgery. However, it can’t be termed as a shortcoming of the procedure. For example, many patients develop Presbyopia when the eyes lose the ability to focus at close objects. In such condition, patients have to use glasses after correcting nearsightedness; there is no error in the distant vision though. Since, they never realized the problem earlier; it comes out to be a shock after LASIK procedure. Today, doctors explain about it upfront to make people mentally ready about the possibility of a recursive procedure.
In some cases, patients have to undergo one more round of surgery, may be after a few years due to regression, under-correction or over-correction. Estimates say that these surgeries (typically known as “touch-up” procedure) are roughly 7 to 10 percent. It is mainly required when patients show a constant change in the vision in spite of laser surgery.
FDA conducted a research in 2009 to measure the percentage of quality issues post- LASIK. It was a comprehensive study spanned in three years focusing on factors that affect quality issues after the treatment. Double vision, possible loss of vision, and dry eye conditions came out as most common issues. Due to a significant number of complaints, authorities had to dive deeper into the problem. However, sufficient data evidence is not there to assess long-term effectiveness and safety of it. Eye specialists worldwide are collecting data to improve information availability for it. According to ophthalmologists, lasers are safe and precise as compared to any other procedure. Doctors find out who is the right candidate first, before going ahead. It is certainly not an iffy treatment.
Why is it a smart choice?
If you are one of those millions who suffer vision related problems, then there is no smarter choice than LASIK, the advanced eye treatment. Vision imperfection disrupts normal life in many ways. People find difficulty in playing, driving, performing daily chores, and pursuing careers that demand perfect vision. Wearing glasses or contacts is cumbersome, uncomfortable, and shabby. Either they do not give "perfect vision" or there are maintenance issues.
Glasses are troublesome to wear, get easily forgotten or damaged. Contact lenses are difficult to manage and cause irritation or redness if used for a long time. Also, constant change in eyesight forces to spend recurrently on specs or contacts. LASIK solves all these problems by giving perfect vision permanently. There are hardly any side-effects of this simple and quick process.
When you opt for LASIK vision correction, you rely on a method that has been trusted by millions of people worldwide and which has got admiration and recommendation from world-class institutes. As per news, NASA and the US military have endorsed it for effective and safe vision correction. Even they have approved it as a standard procedure for vision correction for their officials.
It is quite natural that a person has hesitation or fear while going for any surgery related to eyes because it is one of the most vital organs. However, there is no need of getting afraid of laser procedures because they are safe, quick and reliable. It has an exceptional track record of success in last two decades.