Want Your Vision Back? Get LASIK Surgery!

Custom LASIK 
Am I a Good Candidate for Vision Correction? 
Do You Meet the Following LASIK Requirements?
What to Expect on the Surgical Day
What to Expect after Your Surgery 
What Can You Expect Your Early Vision to Be? 
LASIK Risks 
Informed Consent

LASIK is the most commonly performed laser eye surgery to provide vision correction for patients with myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. LASIK patients experience little, if any, discomfort, and the surgery can be completed in under 15 minutes for both eyes. Once a hinged flap of corneal tissues is created and folded back, the laser removes corneal tissue and reshapes the underlying tissue to correct vision abnormalities. The corneal flap is replaced over the treated area, where it bonds without the need for stitches. Functional vision returns very rapidly, with the majority of patients seeing well enough to drive in a day or two without glasses or contact lenses.


Custom LASIK

Until recently, LASIK treated patients strictly based on their optical prescription despite the fact that each of our eyes has a unique set of naturally occurring optical imperfections. This is known as conventional LASIK. Today, with the advent of wavefront diagnostic technology, wavefront guided excimer lasers can now treat patients according to the uniqueness of their eyes, not just their prescription.

In Custom LASIK, we take more measurements and create a procedure that is more specific to your eye. It’s like having a suit custom made for you rather than off the rack. The fine points of vision are treated. Although the results of conventional LASIK are excellent, for many patients the results of Custom LASIK are even better. In fact, 70% of patients undergoing Custom LASIK see better without glasses than they were able to see WITH correction before the surgery. Furthermore, 99% see well without correction.


Am I a Good Candidate for Vision Correction?

LASIK is a procedure that has provided millions of people with clear vision, but not everyone is considered a candidate for a laser vision correction procedure. In order to be considered a candidate for LASIK, you should meet certain criteria. A list of LASIK requirements can be found below, but it is important that you still meet with your eye doctor to discuss your specific vision correction needs.


Do You Meet the Following LASIK Requirements?

  • I’m nearsighted, farsighted, or have astigmatism.
  • I’m between the ages of 18 and 70.
  • My vision has been stable for at least 2 years.
  • I have no significant eye problems or health issues that may affect my eyes.

During your appointment, we will perform a thorough LASIK evaluation to make sure that you are a qualified candidate for LASIK. Since each set of eyes is unique, there is no way to actually determine your candidacy for LASIK until you have had your pre-operative LASIK evaluation. The pre-operative evaluation will involve a series of diagnostic tests. Below is a list of some items that are typically involved with the evaluation process:

  • Review of the overall health of the eye
  • The measurement of corneal thickness and shape, including corneal topography
  • Review of glasses and contact lens history
  • The measurement of your prescription and refractive error in each eye
  • Dilation of the eyes to check the health of the retina and optic nerve
  • Dilation will also help determine the actual absolute power of the eye
  • Dry eye test
  • Measurement of pupil size

Once you’ve completed your pre-operative evaluation, we will determine your candidacy for LASIK or another laser vision correction procedure. If you feel that you meet the LASIK requirements and are interested in meeting with us to learn more about your candidacy, please contact Betty Cain today at 360-456-4800!


What to Expect on the Surgical Day

(Allow approximately 3–4 hours at the center)

Step 1: Arrive on time (ladies—no eye makeup) wearing comfortable clothing that allows you to feel relaxed.

Step 2: Your eyes will be dilated using eye drops and measured for the procedure. You will also receive additional eye drops to numb or anesthetize the eyes. There are no needles or IVs. After your eyes have been prepared and cleansed for surgery, you will be comfortably laid on the laser bed. The eye to be operated on will be held open using a lid holder called a lid speculum so it is properly exposed for the doctor. A temporary shield will cover the eye that is not being operated on. The doctor and technicians will work together performing a checklist to ensure that the laser is properly set and that all of the necessary things are in place for your surgery.

Step 3: Next, the surface of your eye will be prepared. In some cases, a microkeratome (an instrument that makes a thin flap of protective tissue) is used. This part of the procedure requires that a suction ring is engaged to stabilize the eye. During this time, your vision can grow very dim and you can feel some tightness in your eye. The eye tracker system will be engaged and the laser will follow the very small movements of your eye. Now the laser treatment will be applied.

Step 4: More eye drops will be used and you will be sent home for the remainder of the day. It is important for you to rest for the next 24 hours or as directed by your surgeon before resuming your regular daily activities. It is common to return to regular activity in approximately 1 to 2 days.

Step 5: Plan to return on the following day for a postoperative visit. This appointment will be scheduled before you leave the surgery center.


What to Expect after Your Surgery

You may be sensitive to light. You may also have a feeling that there is something in your eyes. Sunglasses usually help make you more comfortable. You will usually experience some discomfort.

Postoperative eye drops will be used for approximately 7 days. Sometimes as determined by the surgeon, you may need additional drops past that time period.

You will not be allowed to rub your eyes. You will also be asked to avoid getting water, soap, or shampoo in your eyes while showering or bathing.


What Can You Expect Your Early Vision to Be?

Typically patients experience small fluctuations and blurriness in their vision for the first week to a few months as your eyes are healing. This can be very dependent on the amount of nearsightedness, farsightedness, and/or astigmatism that was treated. It is common, however, for most patients to see to resume regular activity very quickly. Your surgeon will discuss with you based on your situation what is best for you.


LASIK Risks

LASIK, as in any other major surgery, has risks. Luckily, the risks are low in LASIK and the rewards are high. Nevertheless, people have lost sight from having LASIK surgery. A good estimate is 1 in 10,000. If you would like to more fully be informed of risks, we invite you to come in for a free consultation and a copy of our informed consent.


Informed Consent

You will be asked to review and sign an Informed Consent statement before surgery. It is long, but is designed to cover as many possible complications as possible.

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