LASIK – Laser Eye Surgery

The refractive state of your eye can be improved and you can decrease the need for wearing glasses through Refractive Eye Surgery. The most common method of surgery followed today is Laser surgery, where lasers are used to reshape the cornea. Laser surgery is the greatest achievement in ophthalmology. Lasers are usually used to treat non refractive conditions.

What is LASIK?

LASIK is one of the most popular types of laser eye surgery. LASIK stands for Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis. This procedure can permanently reshape the cornea, which is the clear covering of the front of the eye, and change its focus power using an excimer laser. Millions of patients have been treated using LASIK, using of a wide variety of different lasers. This procedure can be used to correct myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism.

Prior to the surgery:

Before you undergo LASIK surgery you will have to get your eyes examined by a doctor to see if you are a good candidate. If you wear contact lenses, you will have to stop using them for 1 to 4 weeks before the surgery and switch to wearing your glasses, to allow the cornea to return to its original shape, or else this can have negative consequences like inaccurate measurements and a poor surgical plan; resulting in poor vision after surgery. These measurements would decide how much corneal tissue is to be removed, and have to be repeated a week after your first evaluation as well as before surgery, to see that the measurements have not changed.

It is important that you tell your doctor all about your past and present medical eye conditions, and also the medications you are taking or if you are allergic to any medicines. Then on the day of the surgery you will be given a numbing drop so that you do not feel pain, although some patients do experience some discomfort. The area around your eye will be cleaned and a lid speculum will be used, which is an instrument to hold your eyelids open. A suction ring will be placed on your eye and suction will be created by applying very high pressure to the cornea. As a result of this, your vision will dim and the pressure may cause some discomfort.

During the surgery:

A small device called a microkeratome will be attached to the suction ring; the blade of which will be used to cut a thin flap on your cornea. The flap is created, exposing cornea tissue. After this, both the microkeratome and the suction ring will be removed. The doctor will now lift the flap and fold it back on its hinge, exposing a layer of tissue called the stroma – the middle section of the cornea.

You will be made to focus on a particular spot and the doctor will begin the laser to remove the corneal tissue, according to the measurements taken at the initial examination. The flap is then put back into position and left to heal.

After the surgery:

As no stitches are required, you will just have to wear an eye patch as protection to prevent rubbing, getting poked, or any kind of pressure that might disturb the healing process. It may take up to three to six months for your vision to stabilize after surgery.

It is important that you know all about Laser Surgery before you go through with it – the benefits as well as the side effects if there are any. Consult with your doctor, as only he will be able to tell you if this surgery will be good for you. Once you have all the information needed, you can make the decision whether or not you wish to go ahead with the surgery, and give yourself the opportunity to see the world in a whole new way!