LASIK and Refractive Surgery

by Nov 27, 2019

Refractive surgery refers to a group of procedures, such as LASIK or PRK, that correct refractive error and eliminate the need for glasses or contact lenses.  These surgical options are very routine, minimally invasive, and overall very successful. These procedures can treat nearsightedness, farsightedness, and even moderate amounts of astigmatism, meaning they are an excellent option for a wide range of people who are interested in freedom from their daily reliance on contact lenses or glasses.  Below is a guide to some of the popular options for refractive surgery. 

LASIK and Refractive Surgery Options 

LASIK and PRK are well known laser refractive surgery options.  Photorefractive keratectomy, or PRK, was the first form of refractive surgery and has been performed for over 20 years.  This surgical option uses a high energy laser to safely remove the most superficial layer of the cornea, and then reshapes the underlying tissue and effectively corrects for refractive error.  With PRK, the recovery process requires the front surface of the cornea to completely regenerate. This process may be mildly uncomfortable initially, but in one to two weeks the healing process is complete and vision is clear without the need for glasses or contacts.  LASIK, the most common form of refractive laser surgery, is similar to PRK. In LASIK, a similar high-energy laser is used to form a flap of the superficial cornea. The deeper tissue is then reshaped with this flap still attached, and the tissue is carefully replaced at the end of the procedure.  By retaining this flap of superficial cornea, the recovery time for LASIK is significantly shorter and generally more comfortable than PRK. One of the newest laser refractive surgery options is called Small Incision Lenticule Extraction, more commonly called SMILE. In SMILE, a minor incision is made using a femtosecond laser and a small piece of corneal tissue is removed.  This procedure is gaining popularity because it is less invasive than PRK and LASIK and has a reduced risk of complications. All of these laser corrective surgeries are effective and accurate ways to correct for refractive error, and all have minimal risks of complications. To decide which procedural option is best for you, ask your eye doctor. They can help determine if you are a good candidate for these refractive surgeries based on factors such as corneal thickness, age, amount or type of refractive error, and stability of vision.  

Other Surgical Options

While laser refractive surgery has become a popular alternative to glasses and contact lenses, it is not the only option.  Other surgical procedures, such as Intacs or Clear Lens Extraction, can also be used to correct for a wide variety of refractive errors.  Intacs are biocompatible implants that are surgically placed within the corneal tissue, reshaping the front of the eye and helping to correct vision.  Clear Lens Extraction is a refractive option that is similar to cataract surgery; it involves removing the natural crystalline lens of the eye and replacing it with a clear implant that corrects for the refractive error of the eye.  Like laser refractive surgeries, both Intacs and Clear Lens Extraction are outpatient procedures that can effectively correct vision with minimal risks of side effects. Your eye doctor can help determine if these are appropriate options for you.  

At EyeDocs Family Eye Care, you will recieve only the highest quality eye exam with our eye doctor in Brookville, Ohio.  Call us at 937-770-1265 or schedule an eye exam appointment online with Dr.Kyle Maxam or Dr. Kara Wampler for your eye exam with a Brookville eye doctor. The next time you need an evaluation for PRK, LASIK and refractive surgery options be sure to come to EyeDocs where we always put the care of you and your family first with our eye care in Brookville, OH.

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