Once you have been deemed an ideal LASIK surgery candidate by a qualified LASIK surgeon, your likely next question will be, “how long does LASIK last?”. The answer to this question is mostly dependent on your age at the time of your LASIK surgery. To help answer this common question, we address what you can expect for your improved vision based on your age when you have LASIK surgery.
The younger you are when you have LASIK surgery, the “longer” it will last. LASIK will correct your distance vision, and this correction is permanent in most cases. At Providence Eye & Laser Specialists 3% of our patients experience a slight decline over time requiring an enhancement. Providence Eye offers an enhancement policy that we commonly refer to as our 20/happy policy because our goal is to always make sure our patients are happy. Regardless of if or when you have LASIK surgery, everyone, when they reach their mid-40’s, will experience presbyopia. This weakening of the eye muscles makes it difficult to see up close and requires reading glasses. If you have LASIK surgery in your mid-20’s, it is not unreasonable to expect your LASIK to last 15-20 years!
It's a total myth that you cannot have LASIK over 40! As the most experienced LASIK surgeon in the Charlotte region, Dr. Mozayeni at Providence Eye & Laser Specialists has performed vision correction surgery on thousands of patients over the age of 40. The vision correction surgery options include all-laser LASIK, all-laser PRK, and monovision LASIK or PRK. So, never think you are “too old”.
If you have LASIK surgery at this point in your life, you too can expect a long-lasting result for your distance and near vision. However, your near vision does continue to slowly decline. So, eventually you will have to wear reading glasses again, but that will likely not be for 8-15 years. Your LASIK surgeon should be able to provide you with a reasonable expectation once you have been evaluated.
There are some people that are still ideal candidates even if they are over the age of 60. What one must understand is that like presbyopia, everyone if they live long enough, regardless of having LASIK surgery, will develop cataracts. The average age for cataracts in the United States is 72 years old. However, it is common to see cataracts in people who are in their mid-60s. If you have LASIK at this point in your life you need to realize that cataracts will limit the longevity of the LASIK. As your cataracts progress, your vision will decline. However, after cataract surgery, most people do go back to their post-LASIK vision. Sometimes an enhancement may be necessary to make small corrections.