What LASIK Can and Cannot Correct
It may seem like everyone around you is getting some kind of laser surgery these days! All-laser LASIK eye surgery is extremely popular. However, LASIK does not fix all eye or vision issues. Continue reading to find out exactly what LASIK can and cannot correct.
What LASIK Cannot Correct
Also known as lazy eye, amblyopia is muscle related and typically found in children. LASIK is still a possibility if you have amblyopia, however, LASIK will only reach your best-corrected vision with glasses or contacts.
Cataracts are typically found in people who are over the age of 65 and make your vision cloudy or foggy. Cataracts are a disease of the lens, and as such, LASIK will not correct them. If you have a cataract, you should be monitored by a cataract specialist to determine when cataract surgery would be appropriate. If vision correction is still required after cataract surgery, LASIK is a possibility.
According to the Nation Eye Institute “Glaucoma is a group of diseases that damage the eye’s optic nerve and can result in vision loss and blindness. However, with early detection and treatment, you can often prevent serious vision loss.” If you have glaucoma, a glaucoma specialist should carefully monitor your eyes and condition. If your glaucoma is under control, LASIK may be an option, however, please be aware that LASIK does not treat glaucoma itself, it only improves vision.
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology “Keratoconus is when the cornea thins out and bulges like a cone. Changing the shape of the cornea brings light rays out of focus. As a result, your vision is blurry and distorted, making daily tasks like reading or driving difficult.” If you have keratoconus, you should not have LASIK surgery, as it can exacerbate the situation. A cornea specialist should monitor your vision and keratoconus for treatment.
What LASIK Can Correct
LASIK corrects refractive errors. Refractive errors are the way the eye focuses light – an eye that can see correctly will bend light coming into it correctly, whereas an eye with a refractive error has difficulties doing so, resulting in blurred vision. Refractive errors are not an eye disease, because it is actually based on the way your eye is shaped or structured.
Myopia is also known as nearsightedness and is when you CAN see near but cannot see far away. Nearsightedness is extremely prevalent and in fact has been on the rise for the past several decades. Glasses or contacts with a minus (-) prescription correct nearsightedness.
LASIK and PRK are both extremely effective at correcting nearsightedness, or myopia.
Hyperopia is also known as farsightedness and is when you CAN see far away but you cannot see near. About 25% of the population have hyperopia. If you are farsighted, then your prescription will have a plus (+) in front of it. LASIK and PRK are both extremely effective correcting farsightedness.
Astigmatism typically results in blurred vision at all distances. One of the biggest misconceptions about LASIK is that LASIK cannot correct this type of refractive error. LASIK and PRK can correct astigmatism and have been doing so for over a decade.
According to allaboutvision.com, “Presbyopia is the normal loss of near focusing ability that occurs with age. Most people begin to notice the effects of presbyopia sometime after age 40.” This can be very frustrating for anyone, but especially people who have had perfect vision their whole life. The good news is both LASIK and PRK are effective in correcting presbyopia by creating monovision. This is a very effective method to provide the patient with great usable vision at all distances without being dependent on reading glasses.
If you are interested in correcting your refractive error, whether it be nearsightedness, farsightedness, presbyopia or astigmatism, you should be thoroughly evaluated by a LASIK surgeon. There are dozens of ocular and whole-body health factors that must be taken into consideration to determine if LASIK or PRK surgery is right for you.
If you are interested in taking the first step towards seeing more and living better, call Dr. Mozayeni at Providence Eye & Laser Specialists today to schedule your FREE consultation.