Laser In Situ Keratomileusis, or more commonly known as “LASIK,” is a simple laser eye surgery that aims to correct refractive errors such as nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism. It’s a type of refractive eye surgery that uses lasers to safely reshape the surface of the eye called the cornea in order to bend the light correctly for the image to be focused clearly.
Why get LASIK?
LASIK surgery has gained popularity over recent years due to its excellent outcomes. It is a safe procedure that delivers consistent results with rapid recovery times. For patients who want to be less dependent on glasses and contact lenses, either by necessity or by choice, LASIK helps solve these eye common problems.
Millions of patients globally have benefitted from LASIK surgery. But despite the success of the procedure, the percentage of patients undergoing LASIK is small compared to the larger population of those who benefit from it. Unfortunately, there are a lot of myths, misconceptions, and bad press surrounding LASIK surgery, and it’s time to debunk these myths and know what LASIK is all about.
MYTH 1: It’s painful.
Before the start of the procedure, anesthesia, in the form of eye drops, will be instilled into the eye. After which, one will feel that their eyes become numb or mildly insensitive even to light touch. The patient will feel a few movements like light pressure on the surface of the eye but the eye will remain numb all throughout the procedure.
LASIK surgery can be done in as fast as 10 to 15 minutes per eye, but the numbness will last for as long as 30 to 40 minutes after the surgery. The patient may feel that their eyes are dry and itchy, and may tear up slightly afterwards. But after resting and closing the eyes for 1 to 2 hours, the discomfort will lessen or will eventually subside.
MYTH 2: It can cause blindness.
LASIK success rates are very high. The outcomes are excellent and the risk of functional vision loss is very low. It is rare that LASIK will cause blindness. When done by competent refractive surgeons, with dedicated ophthalmic staff, and using the most advanced diagnostic, therapeutic surgical equipment in reputable eye institutes and centers, LASIK becomes one of the safest, low risk surgeries done in ophthalmology. Peer reviewed studies show that the risk of developing vision threatening infections after LASIK is a lot lower than after contact lens use.
MYTH 3: It’s not worth the price.
One can never put a price on one’s vision. LASIK may seem costly at first, but comparing it to years of changing prescription glasses and monthly contact lens replacements, the cost is well worth the benefit of a lifetime of good, clear vision. With LASIK, you get your money’s worth.
If your eye problems are getting in the way of your quality of life, or your profession relies heavily on having good eyesight (like pilots), it’s best to talk to an ophthalmologist to check if you are a candidate for LASIK surgery.
MYTH 4: It’s for the elderly.
Normally one’s eyesight deteriorates over time, which is the cause for several eye problems in the elderly. It is best to consult an ophthalmologist if one desires to have LASIK. A comprehensive screening test is done to determine the presence of other eye problems, aside from errors of refraction.
Generally, those who are 18 years and above for as long as they undergo a thorough screening done by a refractive surgeon can become a candidate for LASIK surgery.
MYTH 5: It’s for those with high eye grades or very poor eyesight.
As long as there are refractive errors in the eye, no matter how high or low your eye grade is, you can become a candidate for LASIK surgery.
Hospital based vs. specialist based care
All refractive centers will offer the same services, but it is best to choose the right center that not only professionally performs LASIK, but that actively engages patients when it comes to their eye care needs.
The Medical City Eye and Vision Institute Laser Refractive Center offers the latest and most advanced technology in laser vision correction. The Center uses the Wave light Refractive Suite, which is one of the fastest refractive platforms in the world. This combines the speed, precision, and customization of the Wavelight EX500 Excimer Laser for reshaping the cornea, with a fast, reliable, user and patient friendly Wavelight FS200 Femtosecond Laser to create the flap. An all laser LASIK is guaranteed to make LASIK quicker, safer, and with less downtime for the patient.
The Center also employs a complete roster of competent refractive surgeons and an efficient ophthalmic staff who demonstrate excellence in patient care. The medical team works together with the patient to help them achieve the best and clearest vision possible.
LASIK surgery is a convenient and easy way to solve refractive errors. If you’re ready to correct your vision, contact The Medical City’s Eye and Vision Institute Laser Refractive Center at (632) 9881000, (632) 9887000 ext. 7784, or schedule a visit at the 2nd floor, Podium Building, The Medical City, Ortigas, Pasig City.
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