What is LASIK?

Lasik is a surgical procedure performed on the cornea or the front surface of the eye which allows us to change the shape of the eye. In nearsightedness, we want to make the eye more flat and in farsightedness, we want to make it more curved. Additionally, many people have astigmatism which is an irregular football shape of the eye. Besides using laser to either flatten the cornea or make it more curved, it can also be used to re-sculpt the corneal surface and minimize astigmatism.

In traditional Lasik surgery, a flap is created on the surface of the cornea and turned back, and then after laser is used, the flap is repositioned. This type of procedure maximizes the comfort of the patient as the ocular surface is preserved and patient feels virtually no irritation by the following day and has a very rapid visual recovery, also seeing excellently by the next morning.

In some cases, it may be ideal to forego making a flap on the cornea and instead laser the cornea directly or else remove only the surface epithelial cells and then proceed with laser. This type of procedure is referred to as PRK or LASEK. This may be optimal in a situation where the cornea is thin, a large amount of tissue must be lasered due to high levels of prescription, or there is scarring or disease on the surface of the cornea that one would like to remove. In some cases this approach may give a better long term result. With this procedure, there is a little more discomfort in the week following the procedure and maximal visual recovery usually occurs a few weeks later than it does with traditional LASIK.

Furthermore, the laser may be used to achieve excellent distance vision. However, this may not be an optimal solution for all patients. Some patients may have better overall functionality if some nearsightedness is maintained to help them with their closer visual tasks. In some cases, this may give a better long term result.

I believe it's very important to tailor the type of procedure and the type of refractive goal to the individual patient based on their activities, visual needs, and the physical specifics of their corneal and ocular structure. This is hopefully a way to achieve optimal visual functionality and the greatest amount of satisfaction for patients wishing to improve their sight.

It is part of my philosophy in performing these refractive surgical procedures to customize a strategy for each individual patient to attempt to give him the utmost benefit possible.

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As a courtesy to other patients, please notify us of cancellations or need to reschedule at least 24 hours prior to your appointment.


 

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