CO-Management of Refractive SURGERY
Refractive surgery is a great option for patients who are looking to get away from contacts and glasses. At Look Eye Care we believe procedures such as LASIK can offer great benefits to patients that are good candidates so they may achieve long-lasting results.
Your optometrist will determine if you are a good candidate for refractive surgery. They will also coordinate care with your eye surgeon to ensure that your expectations are met and optimal results are delivered.
Some points to consider when thinking about refractive surgery:
It is typically not covered by medical or vision insurance, but FSAs and HSAs can contribute.
Ideal age is 21 and up (this is typically when refractive error is more stable).
Correction may still be needed after surgery to achieve clearer, crisper vision.
Laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis (LASIK)
With LASIK, an eye surgeon creates a thin flap in the cornea using a laser. The flap is folded back and a very specific amount of corneal tissue under the flap is removed using a laser. The flap is then laid back into its original position where it heals in place.
Like any surgery, there are potential risks and complications that should be carefully considered - these will be discussed in detail during your exam and consultation. LASIK is still among the most popular type of refractive treatment in the United States and the overall complication rate is low.
Photorefractive keratectomy (PRK)
For candidates with a very active lifestyle or job, PRK may be a better option. This is because PRK does not involve creating a flap in your cornea like LASIK. If you are highly active, you could accidentally dislodge a corneal flap, causing problems only repairable by your surgeon. The absence of a corneal flap, however, increases post-operative recovery time slightly.
Certain candidates that do not qualify for LASIK may still qualify for PRK as well.
This information was adapted in part from the