You may have only noticed the advertisements on the television and in magazines for Laser eye surgery recently. But the first laser eye surgery was performed over two decades ago. LASIK laser eye surgery is the most popular procedure: Over 36,000,000 LASIK procedures have been performed throughout the world, and it is now tried and tested and extremely safe. Did you know that there is more risk to damaging your eye from using contact lenses than laser eye surgery? At Optical Express less than 1% of patients will develop a complicationand the majority of these are easily overcome with simple management methods such as use of eye drops. That’s not only damage to your cornea from scratching with contact lenses, but also the ever-present risk of infection from the contacts not being cleaned properly. That’s a risk each time you put in and take out your contact lenses, whereas LASIK surgery represents a one-time operation by a specialist and his or her team in a sterilised environment. A much safer option if you care about your eyes!
But you don’t have to take my word for it. Organisations throughout the world that have responsibility for our health and safety have tested and approved LASIK surgery. This includes the UK’s respected National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE), NASA, the US Navy, the World Health Organisation (WHO) and many more. As an example, NASA and the US Navy want their pilots and astronauts to have perfect vision. They trust LASK surgery to achieve this.
Professional sportspeople also have used laser eye surgery to correct their vision and focus issues, such as short-sightedness and astigmatism. Would Tiger Woods and David Beckham have gone for laser eye surgery unless they were convinced of its efficacy and safety? Also many leading musicians, actors and actresses have opted for LASIK surgery.
However, it is important to say that there are some risks with LASIK surgery. Despite getting such an exceptional safety profile, laser eye surgery is nevertheless surgery, and therefore carries attendant risks as do any surgical procedures. However complications are far and few between. Here are three that may occur:
LASIK surgery is performed on the eye, an organic tissue. There is an average 3-4% danger the correction might be good but not completely optimal. But even if you don’t get 20/2o vision the first time, the surgery can be repeated a few months later to fine-tune your eye.
Using a blade in LASIK surgery introduced the possibility of producing an abnormal flap on the surface of the eye. But few surgeons use a blade these days. That’s because there is now blade-free (femtosecond laser) LASIK surgery. With blade-free laser eye surgery, inflammation under the flap can sometimes occur (this is known as diffuse lamellar keratitis), and can be managed by using anti-inflammatory eye drops. In rare cases the cornea flap may have to be lifted to remove the offending inflammation cells.
Finally there is the possibility of a temporary dry eye phenomenon. This occurs when the nerves of the cornea are cut during laser eye surgery. However this is a temporary problem. In about three months these nerves will regenerate and the dry eye problem will disappear.