Common LASIK Questions
How long does LASIK take?
The actual LASIK procedure takes just minutes per eye.
Does LASIK hurt?
Most patients report that LASIK is not painful. However, everyone has a different threshold for discomfort so your experience may be different. You can expect a feeling of pressure on the eye during the corneal flap step. The numbing eye drops we place into your eyes prior to your procedure can help minimize discomfort and pain. As your eyes heal you may also feel slight discomfort; medicated eye drops or over-the-counter pain medications may provide you with relief.
When can I return to work?
After your procedure, you should return home to rest. After a good night’s sleep, most patients wake to the joy of clear vision. Most people are able to return to work within 24-48 hours of their LASIK procedure.
What are the risks of LASIK?
Millions of Americans have had LASIK vision correction. Like any surgery, there are risks to LASIK including:
- Temporary vision problems such as halos, glare and starbursts
- Dry eye
- Flap complications
- Under or over-correction
- Eye infection
- Vision loss (rare)
Experienced LASIK surgeons report a less than 1% complication rate. Some ophthalmologists believe the long-term risk of wearing contact lenses can actually exceed the one-time risk of LASIK. The FDA has stated that wearing contacts can put you at risk of serious eye problems including eye infections and corneal ulcers. For important safety information, click here
What about night vision side-effects?
Traditional LASIK sometimes caused night vision side-effects such as halos, starbursts and glare around lights. At Wright Vision Center we use the Wavelight® EX500 excimer laser to minimize such side-effects. This sophisticated laser system traces the unique contours of the eye to produce a precise 3D map. This map along with other test results allows the doctor to detect and solve the tiniest aberrations, resulting in a much higher percentage of patients achieving 20/20 vision in just one treatment and a much lower likelihood of night vision problems.
Can I really get rid of my glasses?
By choosing LASIK with the right doctor who is using advanced technology, the typical person age 18 to 45 will not need prescription glasses at all. After age 40, the eye lenses may start to lose flexibility, causing the need for reading glasses to see up close. This condition is called presbyopia and it happens eventually to most people. If you are considering LASIK and are using reading glasses, ask about a procedure called monovision LASIK, which corrects one eye for distance vision and one eye for close-up vision.
Will LASIK work for me?
The only way to know if LASIK is right for your eyes is through a comprehensive eye exam. The exam should include full corneal mapping, corneal thickness measurement and measurement of your pupil size. Even if you have the same vision prescription as a friend or family member who has had LASIK, other eye characteristics may prohibit you from a successful outcome.
Are there any LASIK alternatives?
Yes. For patients who have thin corneas, procedures such “epi-LASIK” and “LASEK” are forms of PRK or ASA: a type of vision correction where the laser treatment is done on top of the eye instead of under the protective flap. PRK or ASA is necessary for certain eye conditions where the cornea is too thin to create a protective flap. PRK or ASA can produce the same vision results as LASIK. However, these procedures are less comfortable than LASIK and can take up to two months to achieve the level of vision that LASIK can deliver in just a day or two.
Is all LASIK the same?
No. Different surgeons use different technologies for LASIK. You should demand all-laser or blade-free LASIK for your eyes. LASIK discount centers may offer outdated technology from inexperienced surgeons. Don’t let price dictate which LASIK center you choose. Trust your eyesight to an experienced doctor using advanced technologies.
How can I choose the right doctor?
This is definitely the most important question of all. Look for a local surgeon who will personally oversee every step of the procedure and take the time to answer all your questions. Remember, the only dumb question is the one you don’t ask. Ensure you feel at ease with the surgeon and his staff and that you’re being treated with the respect and care that you deserve as an individual. LASIK is an extremely precise procedure and a surgeon who is thoroughly skilled and expert, with a superb track record, knows precisely what results they can achieve for you. Learn more about LASIK in Rapid City by scheduling your free LASIK Consultation with us.