Are you a good candidate for a LASIK eye surgery procedure?
Hi, it’s Dr. Chotiner from Memorial Eye Institute. A successful LASIK procedure is determined largely by whether you meet certain patient criteria and if laser eye surgery is right for you.
Here I’ll answer the common question of ‘How can I be a good candidate for LASIK eye surgery?’.
How to be a good candidate for LASIK eye surgery procedure:
- Your eyes must be healthy and free from any severe dry eye syndrome, conjunctivitis (pink eye), infection or any type of eye injury.
- Your cornea must have sufficient thickness. Most refractive procedures improve visual acuity by reshaping the front surface of the eye (your cornea). Performing laser eye surgery on a cornea that is too thin or has a surface that is extremely irregular and misshapen could compromise results and impair your vision.
- Your pupils must not be too large. If your pupils are larger than average, you could be at increased risk of side effects such as halos, glares and starbursts in low light, especially when driving at night.
- Your prescription must be within certain limits. If your prescription is very high – whether due to short-sightedness, long-sightedness or astigmatism – your eye surgeon may advise you against the LASIK procedure and discuss some alternatives Results of LASIK surgery for the treatment of very high refractive errors are less predictable and may not be worth the cost and potential risks. In addition, very high amounts of myopia, for example, could require the removal of too much corneal tissue and put you at increased risk of vision complications. If you have a severe refractive error, another type of vision correction surgery may be a better option, such as phakic IOL implantable lenses or refractive lens exchange.
- You must be old enough. Certain procedures require you to be 18 years old; others, 21. Patients younger than these ages can be treated as an exception at the discretion of the LASIK surgeon with permission from the patient’s parent(s) or guardian. Generally, there is no upper age limit to laser eye surgery. However, it is important to note that once you hit your 40s, you may still need reading glasses to correct near vision due to a normal, age-related condition called presbyopia.
- Your vision must be stable. Teenagers and many young adults often experience changes in their contact lens prescription and eyeglass prescription from year to year. It’s important for refractive errors to be stable for at least 12 months before undergoing LASIK or other refractive surgery.
- You must be in good health. Basically, if your body has any trouble with healing, you will have a higher risk of an unsatisfactory LASIK surgery outcome.
- If you are pregnant, you should delay surgery. The LASIK procedure is not suitable if you are pregnant or nursing. Hormonal changes can alter the shape of your cornea, leading to temporary changes in your vision.
- You must have realistic expectations. While the vast majority of LASIK surgery results are excellent, you should be fully aware of the possible side effects, risks and potential LASIK complications before you choose to undergo the procedure.
To learn more about whether you are a good candidate for LASIK or if another type of refractive surgery may be more appropriate, please book online for a free virtual vision assessment on our website today.
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CHOOSE THE MOST EXPERIENCED LASIK SPECIALISTS IN CENTRAL PENNSYLVANIA
Dr. Bennett Chotiner
MEDICAL DIRECTOR, GENERAL OPHTHALMOLOGY, CATARACT & REFRACTIVE SURGERY, LASIK SURGERY
Dr. Bennett Chotiner is the founder and medical director of Memorial Eye Institute. A noted innovator, in 1977 he established his clinical practice, the Pennsylvania Eye Associates. In 1984, he established the Pennsylvania Eye Surgery Center, Pennsylvania’s first …
Dr. Erik A Chotiner
GENERAL OPHTHALMOLOGY, CATARACT & REFRACTIVE SURGERY, LASIK SURGERY
Erik Chotiner, M.D. diagnoses and treats a wide range of medical eye conditions. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Franklin and Marshall College. Dr. Chotiner attended Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia where he received multiple awards including the Physiology Prize for …