Surgical options for better eyesight
Not long ago the only solution to bad vision was glasses. The introduction of contact lenses gave people the desire for an even easier, more permanent solution to correct their eyesight. Today we have several modern types of corrective eye surgery to choose from.
The most popular corrective laser eye surgery procedure is Laser-Assisted in situ Keratomileusis (LASIK). It involves creating a thin flap on the surface of the eye. Beneath the flap a laser is used to reshape the eye itself. The flap then covers the adjustment acting as a bandage and allows for fast healing with little to no discomfort. Photorefractive Keratectomy (PRK) is another type of laser surgery that removes tissue from the eye’s surface to alter the curvature of the eye. PRK is a procedure done to the surface of the eye only and is often used on patients whose corneas are too thin for the surgical flap created with LASIK procedures.
There are several non-laser options for vision correction. Implantable lenses are essentially a contact lens surgically implanted directly into the eye. Conductive Keratoplasty (CK) uses radio waves to introduce spots on the eye’s surface to raise the cornea and correct farsightedness. Radial Keratotomy (RK) is now virtually obsolete due to the progress of corrective laser eye surgery. RK is used to correct nearsightedness and involves cutting incisions with the goal of flattening the surface of the eye. This procedure occasionally creates long term problems for some patients, particularly with night vision and glare.
While vision correction surgery is becoming safer and more affordable, there is still a risk of side effects or even failure. Also as your eyes age, they can still change which could require additional surgical corrections. These risks should be considered when assessing the cost of cosmetic surgery for eyes. It is important to discuss your desired procedure and potential risks in detail with your Optometrist.