Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Useful LASIK Surgery Information

By: Christa Kowalczyk
If you are planning to undergo a LASIK surgery then this article is certainly meant for you. LASIK stands for Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis and is a procedure that permanently changes the shape of the cornea, the clear covering of the front of the eye, using an excimer laser.

Many of us consider this operation to be fairly easy which assures the elimination of eyeglasses or contacts and restoration of a correct vision. But the experts say that this common perception is indeed wrong. Although this surgery is a vision correcting operation performed with ease, the scenario of undergoing this surgery has to be dealt with a more practical approach.

One has to be aware of the complete process and the outcomes before undergoing this surgery. Here we share some important information on the LASIK surgery.

A large percentage of nearsighted, farsighted, and astigmatic patients are potential candidates for undergoing this surgery.

Patients who are 18 years of age or older, have healthy eyes that are free from retinal problems, corneal scars, and any eye disease are suitable. Along with being medically suitable, the best candidates are people with a lifestyle or occupation in which they are dissatisfied with their contact lenses or glasses.

By having an evaluation, examination, and consultation with you, the doctor will be able to determine if you are a good LASIK candidate. This surgery does not guarantee the elimination of eyeglasses or contacts as is the common perception. It is a surgery to correct vision problems and in some cases the patients still wear glasses. Think and discuss your particular case with the surgeon to get a correct picture of what your chances will be.

This surgery is performed as an office procedure in the comfort and convenience of an excimer laser eye surgery suite. The entire treatment takes about 5 to 7 minutes per eye or approximately 15 minutes for both eyes. This surgery does not guarantee perfect vision. The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) reports that seven out of 10 patients achieve 20/20 vision, but 20/20 does not always mean perfect vision.

So if you hear such claims don't get carried away as that does not mean perfect vision. Not everyone can perform this surgery concerning to the most delicate part of your body. Look for an experienced, board-certified ophthalmologist. Ask questions regarding your surgeon's experience and complication rate. Get every doubt cleared from the surgeon about the surgery as you will be staying awake throughout the surgery and certainly you don't expect any surprises during that time.

Only ophthalmologists (Eye MDs) are permitted to perform this operation. It is always better to know the risks involved in the surgery. Laser refractive surgery is surgery. There is no such thing as "minor eye surgery" which is propogated by most advertisements and materials.

Complications such as overcorrection, undercorrection, making the pupil off center, damaging the cornea, inflammation, and infection can leave you miserable. Well the statistics say that about 2% or 5% complications occur, but if it happens to you, it's 100%! Yes LASIK is a better way to correct vision problems but it is better to always enquire about the alternatives and the methods to correct the vision without the surgery.
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