What is LASIK Surgery, it’s Benefits and Symptoms?
What is LASIK Surgery?
It is an eye surgery that changes the shape of the cornea permanently with a special type of cutting laser. The cornea is the dome-shaped transparent tissue present at the front of the eye. It is done to correct certain common vision problems and is an alternate to glasses or contact lenses. The blurriness is ‘refractive index’ and is caused by a difference in between the length of the eye and the shape of the cornea. LASIK is a kind of laser refractive surgery that is best known and is commonly performed.
LASIK is performed with the help of laser to remove a thin layer of corneal tissue which imparts a new shape to the cornea, which enables the light rays to focus clearly on the retina. LASIK is an outpatient surgery that takes only 10 – 15 minutes to perform for each eye. The procedure is performed while awake and only anesthetic used is eye drops to numb the surface of the eye. LASIK may be performed one at a time or on both the eyes during the same session. About the procedure, a flap of corneal tissue is created and is peeled back to reshape the corneal tissue underneath with the excimer laser.
Why is LASIK done?
LASIK is performed to correct any of the three vision problems.
1. Hyperopia (Farsightedness) – In case a person has shorter than average eyeball or if the cornea is too flat, light instead of focusing on the retina falls behind it. This makes the near and sometimes even the distant vision blurry.
2. Myopia (Nearsightedness) – In case a person has slightly longer than normal eyeball or if the cornea curves too sharply, light focuses in front of the retina thereby blurring the distant vision. The objects lying closer are fairly clear as compared to those lying far away.
3. Astigmatism – In case the cornea flattens or curves unevenly; it disrupts the focus of distant as well as near vision resulting in astigmatism.
Benefits of LASIK
Listed below are benefits of LASIK that make it life-changing for so many people. Ditching glasses boosts confidence and makes you feel younger. It also saves lots of money in the long run.
1. Freedom from contact lenses and glasses- You can enjoy clear vision sans the glasses or contact lenses forever. No more caring about the safety of your glasses or carrying lens case and solutions. A statistical survey shows that 98% of the patients were satisfied post the LASIK surgery.
2. Immediate effect- You can experience an immediate effect right after the surgery as the vision stands corrected.
3. Quick recovery-As there will be no bandages or stitches, its post-operative time is very quick. One may experience eye irritation or mild tearing due to pollutants, other than that little or no complications are seen after the surgery.
4. Almost painless- The surgery causes little or no pain as compared to other surgeries.
5. Quick surgery time- The surgery takes around 10- 15 minutes only for each eye. The laser beam makes it quick and easy imparting lifetime of clear vision.
6. No risks- The LASIK surgery involves no risk owing to the technological advancements. There is no scope of vision impairment.
7. Night time vision improves- Several patients observe that their night-time vision has improved after LASIK and they do not have to deal with dry contact lenses at the end of the day or of lights reflecting off the lenses.
8. LASIK reduces allergy symptoms- Several patients in the past have reported sinus issues and headaches. The former contact wearers find their eyes less red and irritated.
Symptoms commonly faced after LASIK
Mentioned below are few symptoms that people might experience after LASIK surgery
1. Blurred vision and fluctuations- The cornea slightly swells past the LASIK eye surgery, hence a pale mist comes across the vision. The swelling subsides within 48 hours of the surgery. The visual fluctuations and some blurring is normal too, as the eyes settle down. If a patient feels that the symptom is getting worse, it is advisable to contact the clinic where you were treated.
2. Light sensitivity- Immediately after the surgery is performed, it is absolutely normal to experience temporary sensitivity to light of around 12- 24 hours. It is recommended to wear sunglasses on the day of surgery when going outside.
3. Pain and soreness- The effect of anesthetic drops used to numb the eye start to wear off, leaving behind an uncomfortable feeling for a few hours after the surgery. If significant pain persists, do call your eye clinic.
4. Irritation and/or dry eyes- It is normal to experience mild irritation, discomfort or watering eyes on the day laser surgery has been performed. Do use the eye drops as per the instruction of the specialist as it helps in healing more quickly.
LASIK is usually not advisable if a patient has keratoconus, large pupils, or thin cornea, severe nearsightedness, fairly good overall vision or age-related changes.