A: Wavefront adds an automatic measurement of more subtle distortions (called higher order aberrations) than just nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism corrected by conventional LASIK. However, these “higher order aberrations” account for only a small amount (probably no more than 10%) of the total refractive error of the average person’s eye.
… to treat my refractive error (nearsightedness, farsightedness and/or astigmastism)?
A: You can find approved devices, their approval date, and a synopsis of the approved indications on the FDA-APPROVED LASERS page.
A: The FDA regulates the safety and effectiveness of medical devices for their intended use. The FDA does not regulate the marketing of or any fees associated with the use of that product. Again, you may want to go to your library and see if there is a local community services magazine that may provide comparison information of services for doctors in your area.
Ablate in surgery, is to remove.
Ablation zone the area of tissue that is removed during laser surgery.
Accommodation the ability of the eye to change its focus from distant objects to near objects.
Acuity clearness, or sharpness of vision.
Astigmatism a distortion of the image on the retina caused by irregularities in the cornea or lens.
Cornea the clear, front part of the eye. The cornea is the first part of the eye that bends (or refracts) the light and provides most of the focusing power.
Diopter the measurement of refractive error. A negative diopter value signifies an eye with myopia and positive diopter value signifies an eye with hyperopia.
Dry Eye Syndrome a common condition that occurs when the eyes do not produce enough tears to keep the eye moist and comfortable. Common symptoms of dry eye include pain, stinging, burning, scratchiness, and intermittent blurring of vision.
Endothelium the inner layer of cells on the inside surface of the cornea.
Epithelium the outermost layer of cells of the cornea and the eye’s first defense against infection.
Excimer laser an ultraviolet laser used in refractive surgery to remove corneal tissue.
Farsightedness the common term for hyperopia.
– Career impact – does your job prohibit refractive surgery?
– Cost – can you really afford this procedure?
– Medical conditions – e.g., do you have an autoimmune disease or other major illness? Do you have a chronic illness that might slow or alter healing?
– Eye conditions – do you have or have you ever had any problems with your eyes other than needing glasses or contacts?
Monovision is one clinical technique used to deal with the correction of presbyopia, the gradual loss of the ability of the eye to change focus for close-up tasks that progresses with age. The intent of monovision is for the presbyopic patient to use one eye for distance viewing and one eye for near viewing. This practice was first applied to fit contact lens wearers and more recently to LASIK and other refractive surgeries.
With contact lenses, a presbyopic patient has one eye fit with a contact lens to correct distance vision, and the other eye fit with a contact lens to correct near vision. In the same way, with LASIK, a presbyopic patient has one eye operated on to correct the distance vision, and the other operated on to correct the near vision. In other words, the goal of the surgery is for one eye to have vision worse than 20/20, the commonly referred to goal for LASIK surgical correction of distance vision. Since one eye is corrected for distance viewing and the other eye is corrected for near viewing, the two eyes no longer work together.
|A: Most patients are very pleased with the results of their refractive surgery. However, like any other medical procedure, there are risks involved.|
That’s why it is important for you to understand the limitations and possible complications of refractive surgery.
Before undergoing a refractive procedure, you should carefully weigh the risks and benefits based on your own personal value system, and try to avoid being influenced by friends that have had the procedure or doctors encouraging you to do so.
You are probably NOT a good candidate for refractive surgery if:
- You are not a risk taker. Certain complications are unavoidable in a percentage of patients, and there are no long-term data available for current procedures.
- It will jeopardize your career. Some jobs prohibit certain refractive procedures. Be sure to check with your employer/professional society/military service before undergoing any procedure.
- Cost is an issue. Most medical insurance will not pay for refractive surgery. Although the cost is coming down, it is still significant.
You required a change in your contact lens or glasses prescription in the past year. This is called refractive instability.
Patients who are:
- In their early 20s or younger,
- Whose hormones are fluctuating due to disease such as diabetes,
- Who are pregnant or breastfeeding, or
- Who are taking medications that may cause fluctuations in vision,
are more likely to have refractive instability and should discuss the possible additional risks with their doctor. Continue reading “Q: Is LASIK For Me?”
A: Immediately after the procedure, your eye may burn, itch, or feel like there is something in it. You may experience some discomfort, or in some cases, mild pain and your doctor may suggest you take a mild pain reliever. Both your eyes may tear or water. Your vision will probably be hazy or blurry. You will instinctively want to rub your eye, but don’t!
Rubbing your eye could dislodge the flap, requiring further treatment. In addition, you may experience sensitivity to light, glare, starbursts or haloes around lights, or the whites of your eye may look red or bloodshot. These symptoms should improve considerably within the first few days after surgery.
Continue reading “Q: What should I expect AFTER surgery?”