Lasik Eye Surgery - Side Effects
What is LASIK Eye Surgery?
Used to correct refractive errors, LASIK eye surgery is a treatment that reshapes the cornea in order to produce clear vision. The LASIK refractive eye surgery procedure can treat myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), and astigmatism, and reduce patients’ dependency on contact lenses and glasses. Because refractive errors impede the focusing ability of the eye, patients who suffer from these conditions experience blurred vision. LASIK eye surgery provides these inpiduals with an effective treatment option, where a predetermined amount of corneal tissue is removed. This reshaping of the cornea improves the eye’s focusing power and enhances patients’ visual acuity.
Who is a Good Candidate for LASIK Eye Surgery?
A good candidate for LASIK eye surgery must meet several general requisites. LASIK patients should be at least 18 years old, demonstrate no change in refraction for at least one year, and have realistic expectations regarding the results of LASIK eye surgery. Patients who have experienced an eye infection or injury in the past year should not undergo LASIK. If you are interested in LASIK, an eye surgeon or ophthalmologist can determine if you are a candidate for the procedure. During a comprehensive eye exam, your ophthalmologist will check your eyes and medical history
LASIK Eye Surgery Side Effects
If you have decided to get Lasik Laser Eye Surgery done, this information is not meant to discourage you from undertaking the surgery. Instead, this information provides a general awareness on the possible side effects of Lasik Laser Eye Surgery so that you are more informed and hopefully more prepared in your lasik eye surgery.
No vision correction procedure is without the risk of complications or side effects. Though LASIK has been in use since 14 years, is a relatively new procedure, it is possible that there may be longer-term risks that are unknown at this time. Risks and discomforts that might be associated with the LASIK procedure are as follows. All are rare but possible.
LASIK Risks and Benefits
Most patients are extremely pleased with their LASIK results. LASIK eye surgery benefits include improved visual activity, freedom from corrective eyewear, and possibly new career opportunities. Patients who achieve a successful LASIK outcome can eliminate their need for glasses or contact lenses, and enjoy the freedom of clear vision at all times. Patients can play sports, swim, spend a day at the beach, and participate in various activities without the restrictions that glasses and contacts bring. LASIK eye surgery is a safe and effective treatment that has continued to gain popularity among patients.
A small number of patients, about 1 to 5% experience LASIK eye surgery complications. LASIK risks include sensitivity to light, haloed or glared vision, irregular astigmatism, dry eyes, loss of visual clarity, and sensitivity. Fortunately, advances in LASIK technology have dramatically reduced complications and many problems can be easily corrected with additional treatment.
Temporary Side Effects of Lasik Laser Eye Surgery
Once you have undergone the surgery, there are certain side effects of laser eye surgery that can be expected and they may be more noticeable on some patients than on other patients. For example, the eyes will feel mild discomfort or pain for the first two or three days and experience a tearing in the eye. You may also notice pink or red spots on the whites of your eyes. Another side effect of laser eye surgery is that your vision may seem hazy or blurry. Your eyes may feel dry and you may experience glare from lights in the house or outside. You may also see a halo effect around lights and have difficulty with driving at night for the first month. Most of these side effects of laser eye surgery should be mild and they will disappear in the few days. Lingering side effects of laser eye surgery should be brought to the attention of the surgeon who performed the laser eye surgery.
Long-Term Side Effects of Lasik Laser Eye Surgery
- The worst side effect of laser eye surgery is that some patients may lose part or all of their vision as a result of the treatment. The other side effects of laser eye surgery are easier to overcome. For example, some may be under treated or over treated.
- For those who have successfully corrected their eyesight, with good vision on the vision chart, some of them may develop permanent debilitating visual symptoms such as glare, halos, and/or double vision that can seriously affect night time vision. They may not be able to see clearly in situations of low contrast, such as at night or in fog.
- Another potential long term side effect of laser eye surgery is the development of severe dry eye syndrome. Because of the surgery, your eyes may not be able to produce sufficient tears to keep your eyes moist and comfortable. This side effect of laser eye surgery can be resolved through intensive drop therapy.
Despite of the existence of all the side effects of laser eye surgery, statistics have shown that approximately 92% of patients have been satisfied with the laser eye surgery. However, laser eye surgery is a relatively new procedure. As such, not all side effects of laser eye surgery are fully explored. Some side effects of laser eye surgery may be caused by medications that you are administering for an existing illness while others may be attributed to age.