Is laser vision correction permanent?
Yes, laser vision correction results in a permanent change to the shape of the cornea. However, laser vision correction will not prevent age related conditions such as presbyopia (need for reading glasses) or cataracts. These conditions would still be treated in their normal manner.
When can I return to work and normal activities?
Most LASIK patients notice dramatic improvement within the first day or two following the procedure and are able to drive and return to work the next day. The speed of visual recovery ultimately depends on personal healing patterns, but patients usually return to their normal activities the next day. With Advanced Surface Treatment – AST, we recommend taking a few days off after the surgery. It may take several days for the vision to become adequate to drive. However, since it does take some time to adjust to the change, you should use common sense and only drive when you feel confident with your vision.
What are the long-term effects of laser vision correction?
Laser vision correction has been performed since 1987. The FDA has approved the use of the excimer laser and recognized laser vision correction as being safe and effective for the treatment of nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism in eligible patients. In the United States alone, close to two million procedures have been performed. The first patient ever treated with laser vision correction in the United States was in 1987. That patient achieved 20/20 vision following treatment and still has 20/20 vision more than 20 years later. Experts worldwide are confident that they will discover no long term problems with laser vision correction, making LASIK the most commonly performed refractive surgery in the world.
What if I currently wear contact lenses?
Prior to LASIK, it is important that the curvature of the corneas return to their natural shape. The only way to ensure this is for contact lens use to be discontinued. For most patients who wear soft contact lenses, the cornea will return to its natural shape within 3 to 4 days after discontinuing contact lens wear. Thirty days without contact lenses is generally required to reach corneal stability for patients who wear rigid (hard) or gas permeable lenses.
What can I expect my vision to be after LASIK?
As with any surgical procedure, results cannot be guaranteed. The results of laser vision correction have been overwhelmingly successful in eliminating or reducing the dependence on glasses or contact lenses. In a recent review of our patients treated for nearsightedness, farsightedness, and/or astigmatism, 95% achieved 20/20 vision following surgery. 99% of patients achieved 20/40 or better after LASIK, meaning they can drive legally, play sports, and join the police or fire departments without depending on corrective eyewear. Ultimately, how well a person sees and how quickly their vision improves depends on the degree of their prescription and their particular healing pattern. During your complimentary consultation we will discuss the range of probable outcomes based on your prescription.
Is LASIK painful?
Eye drops are used to numb the eyes so there is no pain during the procedure. No needles or injections are required. After LASIK, post-operative discomfort is minimal. However, it is common to have some eye irritation during the first few hours. Advanced Surface Treatment (AST) may be slightly more uncomfortable, but you will be given more drops and medications to control the discomfort.
Does insurance cover LASIK?
LASIK is an elective procedure, which means that the surgery is optional. As a result, only a few insurance companies pay for all or part of vision correction procedures— you can check with your plan administrator, or we will be happy to check coverage for you when you come in. In some cases, the fees can be covered by medical flex/cafeteria plans that allow pre-tax dollars to be set aside. Please ask your employer if they offer this type of benefit. Vision correction also may be tax deductible as a medical expense (check with your financial advisor). We do offer affordable interest free payment plans. It is easy to apply online and receive credit approval before you schedule an appointment.
Is there financing available?
Yes, our office provides monthly payment plans through CareCredit that make laser vision correction easily affordable.
Can PRK or LASIK be done after previous refractive procedures such as RK?
Yes. However, this depends on each patient, and needs to be assessed individually. Please call our office to schedule a consultation with Dr. B. Linda Vu.
Why should I choose the Allegretto Wave Laser?
Patients and surgeons choose the Allegretto Wave Laser for Safety, Performance and Quality of Vision. Safety
- PerfectPulse Technology controls every laser pulse, prevents energy instabilities or decentrations
- Laser will stop if your eye moves out of range
- Less post-operative complications, increased predictability and more patient comfort due to faster treatment time
- Very tissue friendly which allows for treatment of thinner corneas
- Small, round beam for smoother treatment and improved healing
- Random, optimized pulse placement to prevent thermal effects on the eye that could lead to dryness
- The FDA clinical results were comparable or better than custom results with other lasers
Quality of Vision
- The Allegretto Wave has shown to preserve and improve quality of vision in regards to glare
- The wavefront-optimized treatment was designed to prevent the induction of additional visual imperfections (aberrations)
- The Allegretto Wave creates very large, functional treatment zones on the eye which may be beneficial for patients with larger pupils and under dim light conditions