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Laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK)

What is LASIK?

During LASIK surgery, a partial thickness flap is made in the cornea. This flap is then lifted, and laser is applied to reshape the underlying corneal bed. The flap is then repositioned and allowed to heal on its own without the need for sutures. All together, LASIK surgery takes about 20 minutes for both eyes, and most patients achieve excellent vision by the next day. 

Image by Paul Skorupskas

Why choose LASIK?

LASIK remains the most popular option for laser vision correction, a testament to the over 40 million people who have underdone LASIK surgery since its inception. Compared to SMILE, it allows for easy retreatment if needed and, compared to PRK, it offers more rapid vision recovery. Additionally, LASIK has an excellent track record of safety when patients are screened appropriately. 

How effective is LASIK? 

Before the onset of presbyopia (usually around the age of 45), LASIK is very effective at delivering excellent distance, intermediate, and near vision. In fact, most patients achieve 20/20 vision by the very next day.  After the onset of presbyopia, the use of mini-monovision (i.e., setting one eye for distance vision and the other eye for intermediate vision) offers greater spectacle independence. That's the whole point, right?

What can I expect after LASIK surgery? 

After surgery, you will be able to go home immediately. You will see your surgeon the next day as well as one week, six weeks, and three months after surgery to ensure proper healing.  On the day of surgery, you will be encouraged to go home and nap (not a bad deal) to allow the LASIK flaps to heal. This ensures proper placement of the flap long term. Most patients notice a "smokiness" to their vision for the first day which is completely normal and which quickly resolves over the next day or two. By the next day, almost all patients see at or near 20/20. You will be started on a short course of antibiotic and steroid eye drops to promote healing.  

For more information on LASIK surgery, please visit our blog by clicking the button below! I'll try to answer common questions in the days, weeks and months ahead!

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