How LASIK Works

Diagram of an eye

There are three main parts to the human eye:

  • Cornea
  • Lens
  • Retina

In normal vision, the cornea refracts (bends) light so it can be directed correctly through the lens and onto the retina. Vision problems are usually the result of disorders or irregularities of the shape of the cornea. LASIK solves these problems by using ultraviolet lasers to reshape the curve of the cornea so you can have clear vision.

Steps of LASIK

Step 1: Corneal Mapping

LASIK changes the shape of your cornea by removing tissue, so it is essential that corneal thickness is measured with extreme accuracy. This preparation step should be done using advanced technology such as Alcon Vario. At Wright Vision Center a minimum of three scans are taken to gauge the precise thickness of your cornea so that you and your doctor have all the information for the best decision about your vision.

Step 2: Flap Creation

LASIK step 2, flap creation

The cornea is protected by a layer of tissue which has to be lifted so that the cornea can be corrected. This step in the LASIK procedure is the creation of the corneal flap. In the early days of LASIK, an instrument called a microkeratome, an oscillating razor blade, was used to cut the corneal flap. With all-laser LASIK this step is performed with a special laser. At Wright Vision Center we use the VICTUS™ femtosecond laser which creates a thinner and more precise flap, allowing the tissue to grow back much faster and stronger than the microkeratome method. This technology is more comfortable and results in faster healing time than the microkeratome method.

Step 3: Correcting the Corneal Imperfections

LASIK Step 3

Next, the flap is lifted and the Wavelight® EX500 excimer laser is used to reshape the underlying corneal tissue to correct any irregularities. This laser provides ‘Wavefront Optimized®’ treatments, which means that every treatment is customized to the patient’s individual refraction and corneal curvature using 3D mapping technology, generally resulting in less sensitivity to glare at night.

Step 4: Flap Repositioning

LASIK Step 4, Flap reposition

Finally, the flap is folded back into place where it bonds quickly. Healing is rapid with all-laser LASIK and most people can return to work the next day. There is a lot to learn about LASIK in Rapid City; our team is ready to help you fully understand the process. Schedule your free LASIK Consultation today.

Watch Sean’s LASIK Experience at Wright Vision Center

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