LASIK stands for laser in-situ keratomileusis which is a common procedure used for the treatment of refractive errors, i.e., myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. It is a type of refractive surgery that works by reshaping the cornea with the help of a laser beam. As the refractive ability of the cornea is restored, the patient becomes able to see clearly without the help of visual aid.
The most common reason for irreversible blindness in India is undercorrected refractive errors. Not only this, but vision problems can also make regular life difficult. For instance, you won’t be able to swim properly or watch 3D movies without comfort. Even on an everyday basis, you will have issues while driving, watching TV, or reading books. Besides this, wearing eyeglasses and contact lenses also has numerous problems. You will have to be careful not to break them and also need to replace them as your eye power will continue increasing with age due to the corneal or eyeball defect.
Due to all these reasons, most people are eager to undergo minimally invasive LASIK eye surgery and correct the refractive errors in their eyes.
Refractive error is a problem in which the eyes lose their ability to focus the light on the retina with precision due to irregularities in the shape of the eye or cornea. Each type of refractive error forms due to any of the following reasons:
Due to any of the above reasons, people of all age-groups experience vision loss. With age, refractive errors only progress and become more problematic. LASIK surgery is performed for the correction of these refractive errors:
With the help of laser technology, all these refractive errors can be corrected with precision.
Both visual acuity tests and refraction tests are done as a part of a comprehensive eye exam that is done once a year. It also involves other tests like a corneal exam, pupil exam, extraocular muscles exam, etc.
A refraction test is also called a vision test which helps the eye doctor to determine the prescription of the eyeglasses or contact lenses you will need. The doctor will assess how the light bends as it travels through the cornea and lens of the eye.
Once it is confirmed that you need corrective lenses, the doctor will either use a computerized refractor or shine a light into your eyes to find what type of prescription you’ll need. The amount of light that bounces back off your retina will tell the refractive score A phoropter will be placed in front of your eyes and the doctor will use different lenses to accurately identify your refractive power.
A visual acuity test is done to see your ability to see the details of a letter or symbol at a specific distance. This test is meant to evaluate the eye’s ability to identify the shapes and details of the objects. Visual acuity tests can be done for color vision, peripheral vision, and depth perception.
There are two tests done for visual acuity, Snellen and random E test.
The results of both these tests combined help the doctor to calculate the refractive error which will be used during the surgery.
The test is done to determine the thickness of the cornea. As the surgery involves the removal of corneal tissues, it is important to know how many tissues will remain after the correction. People who have a thin cornea are often not considered an ideal candidate for LASIK surgery.
In this test, a 3-D map of the cornea is created with the help of a computer-assisted diagnostic tool. It produces a detailed visual description of the shape and power of the cornea. It will help the doctor to determine how much corneal tissue will be removed and the right ablation pattern.
Mild myopia has eye power up to -3.00 diopters. Moderate myopia has a power in the range of -3.00 to -6.00 diopters. High myopia has a power of more than -6.00 diopters.
LASIK eye surgery is most commonly performed by experienced ophthalmologists who have successfully performed over 500 surgeries. Moreover, the laser is rarely manually operating. A computerized machine is used to control and operate the laser machine that removes the corneal tissues. The laser has an automatic detection system that will identify the movements of the eyes and stop functioning to ensure that other eye components are not harmed under any circumstances. Therefore, there are negligible chances of complications during the surgery itself.
The eyes are a very important part of our body and their health matters a lot to see the world around us. What most people don’t realize is that vision problems can be avoided and eyes can be kept healthy if they follow the steps below:
To find out whether a person with refractive error is eligible to undergo LASIK eye surgery or not, the doctors use well-defined criteria that involve the following points:
The only way to confirm that you are a good candidate for LASIK treatment is to see an eye specialist and get evaluated.
Myth 1: Anyone can undergo LASIK surgery.
Facts- Not everyone can undergo LASIK. There are specific guidelines and criteria to find out if a person is eligible for LASIK or not.
Myth 2: LASIK is painful and the laser can burn your eyes.
Facts-LASIK is not a painful procedure but it may cause a little bit of discomfort. And the laser beam is controlled by a computerized machine that shuts down after sensing eye movements to avoid damage to any of the eye components.
Myth 3: After having LASIK surgery, you won’t have to wear glasses or contact lenses for the rest of your life.
Facts-LASIK can fix refractive errors in your eyes and have long-lasting effects. However, it can’t protect your eyes from age-related problems that will require you to wear glasses or contact lenses again.
Myth 4: LASIK can only treat one eye condition at once.
Facts-LASIK can treat all kinds of refractive errors at once, including myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism.
Myth 5: The effects of LASIK only last for a few years.
Facts-The effects of LASIK eye surgery are long-lasting for most individuals. However, the results may vary depending on how much the patient cares for his/her eyes after having the surgery.
Myth 6: LASIK is a very expensive procedure.
Facts-LASIK may seem like an expensive procedure but it is a one-time investment that will save you from spending money every year on spectacles, prescriptions, contact lenses, lens solutions, etc.
You should see an eye doctor at least once or twice a year at a younger age. After you reach the age of 40, it will be better if you go and visit an eye specialist every year as eye health declines considerably with age.
Besides this, if you experience the following things, you should immediately see an eye doctor:
The non-surgical treatment options for refractive errors involve the following:
Spectacles or Eyeglasses
Spectacles are the first line of treatment for refractive errors. There are three types of lenses used in eyeglasses:
As your refractive error increases, the power of the glasses will also increase. In mild stages, the thickness of the lens is small which will increase over time when your eye power increases.
This method of refractive error treatment is more suitable for young adults. There are different materials and types of lenses available that are prescribed after proper diagnosis.
You will have to follow certain guidelines to use contact lenses, which is why people often use either eyeglasses or consider undergoing LASIK eye surgery.
LASIK eye surgery is usually not covered under the health insurance policy as it is not a critical illness. Refractive errors can be corrected easily through prescription glasses or contact lenses. The treatment is not medically necessary and it is done as an elective procedure. Thus, LASIK is generally not covered by insurance.
However, there is one exception to this rule that is included in all medical policies. LASIK eye treatment will be covered under insurance if your eye power is more than 7.0 diopters. Then you can file a claim for the treatment and cover all expenses.
The eyes start recovering immediately after the LASIK eye surgery and the initial healing occurs rapidly. Your vision will stabilize within 24-48 hours. Thus, the recovery rate is quick. However, you will have to follow specific instructions for at least a month to ensure that no complications arise until the eyes heal completely.
It is the flap that will take around a few weeks to heal. As soon as the flap heals, you will be able to resume daily activities without any problem. The doctor will advise you to come back for a follow-up after one week of having surgery to monitor your recovery. After that, you can get follow-ups after six months or longer to monitor your vision and eye health.
For the majority of people who undergo LASIK eye surgery, the results of the treatment are long-lasting. They remain happy with the results and enjoy almost 10 years without any regression. Still, there is a possibility that your vision may change after the procedure if you don’t pay attention to your eye health.
Your age also matters a lot in determining the effectiveness of LASIK in the long term. With age, eye health declines due to which the refractive power often returns. After 40, the eye becomes more vulnerable to problems like presbyopia, cataracts, macular degeneration, etc. Thus, there are chances that other refractive errors will also return. If you are lucky, there is also a possibility that your vision won’t decline at all after having LASIK eye surgery
On 30th August 2021, Mr. Ayush Khurana (name changed) came to us with complaints about significant vision loss. At the age of 24, he had a refractive error of 7.50 and 7.75 diopters in right and left eye respectively.
Our eye surgeon, Dr. Varun Gogia diagnosed the patient and found out that he also has cylindrical power. The doctor recommended LASIK eye surgery to which the patient agreed instantly. His surgery was planned 7 days later on 6th Sept and he underwent the procedure. He was a little bit nervous about the treatment. Dr. Varun helped him understand the benefits of the surgery and proceeded with the treatment after getting consent.
There were slight risks with the surgery as he was suffering from high myopia. But the doctor performed the surgery with precision and helped him achieve clear vision in the easiest way possible. His vision cleared within a couple of hours after the surgery and he is now able to perform all activities without any problem.
What is wavefront LASIK?
It is a type of LASIK surgery in which the surgeon creates a 3-D map of the cornea with the help of topography and uses the map to perform the surgery with higher precision.
Is LASIK a permanent way to correct vision problems?
Yes. LASIK is a permanent vision correction solution as it effectively and safely corrects the current refractive error with precision. The cornea is reshaped properly to ensure that no refractive error is left. So, you can rest assured knowing that LASIK surgery is indeed a permanent solution.
Can LASIK results last for a lifetime?
Yes. LASIK can last for 10 years, 20 years, and even for a lifetime in some cases. The lasting effects depend on multiple factors, such as the age of the patient, medical conditions, and how much the patient pays attention to eye health.
Is it a good idea to undergo LASIK surgery after 40?
Yes. No matter what your age is, LASIK is most certainly a good method to prevent further vision loss due to refractive errors. It is safe for patients over 40 and also has long-term value if the patient’s eye health is optimal.
Vision problems are very common in India, especially in young children. Currently, myopia is the most common refractive error that affects 21.15% of children of the age group 5-15. And based on the statistics, it has been predicted that the number will rise up to 31.89% in 2030 and 48.14% in 2050.
The prevalence of refractive error is found at 7.61% in urban India and 5.21% in rural India which is significant.
LASIK eye treatment has become very popular in recent years thanks to the advanced technology that has made surgical procedures safer and effective. If you are fed up with the hassles of wearing eyeglasses or contact lenses and want to get rid of them permanently, Pristyn Care is the right solution. We provide a seamless surgical experience to patients who wish to undergo vision correction surgery. Pristyn Care has its own clinics and also works in association with top hospitals to provide high-quality care to the patients. You can rely on us and undergo LASIK eye surgery in a hassle-free way. We will handle all treatment-related formalities on your behalf and help you get rid of vision problems once and for all.
To get optimal care, you need to consult with the best ophthalmologists. And Pristyn Care houses the best team of eye specialists across 30+ cities. You can schedule your consultation with the doctors at your convenience by giving them a call or filling the appointment form. Our representatives will coordinate with you throughout the treatment journey and arrange everything on your behalf to simplify your surgical experience.
You can talk to the best eye doctors in India and discuss the LASIK eye treatment, its risks, benefits, and results in detail.