LASIK eye surgery is a laser eye operation to treat vision-related problems and dysfunctions. In this surgery, the cornea is reshaped or remodelled, enabling light to enter the eye. LASIK surgery usually takes 15-20 minutes and is a painless procedure. It is the safest and best alternative for glasses and contact lenses. Three types of LASIK surgery are generally opted by surgeons, which are listed below:
LASIK is the most popular form of laser eye surgery, which creates a hinged flap in the eye cornea using a sterile blade. Then, the surgeon uses a laser to remove the thin layers from the cornea.
Intra- LASIK –
In this type of surgery, a laser is used instead of a blade to cut and reshape the cornea.
Wavefront LASIK –
It is one of the most advanced types of surgery where a cornea map is produced with the help of a three-dimensional scan. Wavefront LASIK is the most accurate surgery, with the highest chance of vision improvement.
Before the surgery, there is a pre-operative assessment conducted by the hospital. Some basic tests are performed to check eligibility and determine if you and your eyes are fit for the surgery without serious complications. Your eye surgeon must check if your eyes are healthy enough for the surgery without complications. The doctor must know some basic details such as the size of the pupil, the shape of the cornea, the thickness of the eye cornea, refractive errors such as myopia, astigmatism, etc., moistness in the eyes, and any other eye conditions.
There are a few guidelines that the patient must follow before going in for the surgery, which includes not wearing contact lenses for a certain amount of time, as instructed by the ophthalmologist. The surgeon must also examine the patient’s medical history and perform a detailed eye examination. The surgeon must evaluate a few tests before operating, which include refraction, eye pressure, corneal mapping, and pupil dilation with retina evaluation.
After all the pre-operative procedures, once the patient goes in for the surgery, they are given local anesthesia for painless surgery. It is done to numb the eyes, thus making them positioned accurately under the laser. The eyelids will be kept open with the help of a lid speculum instrument. The surgeon will further mark the eye cornea with the help of an ink pen before creating a flap. Furthermore, a thin flap is created in the cornea with the help of an instrument called a microkeratome. In this case, to stop eye movement, a suction ring can be used to prevent any effect on the quality of the flap.
Furthermore, the surgeon uses a computer to adjust the laser after the flap is created and pulled back. The patient will be asked to look at the light for some time which will be observed by the surgeon when the laser sends light pulses into the cornea by using a microscope. After this step, the corneal tissue is reshaped with the help of a laser, and the flap is put back into position. The surgery usually takes 5-10 minutes for each eye.
After the surgery, the patient must rest before the examiner goes for post-operative procedures. The patient usually feels a little blurry and itchy sensation in the eyes. The eye might also feel burning or pressurized. Having someone take the patient home is usually advised, as the vision may need clarification. The ophthalmologist will prescribe medications to prevent dryness, inflammation, or infection.
Who should undergo LASIK Surgery?
While the surgery is extremely painless and hassle-free, general recommendations exist regarding who should take LASIK. The eyes continue to grow until eighteen years of age. Eye specialists usually recommend that LASIK surgery should not be performed until one is eighteen, so children are not advised to sit for the surgery because the treatment won’t be permanent. The patient must wear glasses as the eye prescription changes due to natural growth. However, patients suffering from severe refractive errors, especially children with amblyopia or lazy eye, can opt for LASIK surgery. It has been proven beneficial and highly effective in such cases as well. Usually, when conventional treatments such as wearing glasses or contact lenses fail, patients under eighteen are also advised to undergo LASIK surgery.
Moreover, early adulthood is ideal for undergoing LASIK surgery or laser vision treatment. It is because eye surgery after eighteen usually provides a permanent solution, and one does not require glasses or lenses for more than twenty years. After the age of forty, the eyes cannot usually handle laser eye treatment since presbyopia begins to set in during this age. However, your doctor will examine your medical history and pre-existing diseases to rule out any possibility of complications before performing this surgery.
Furthermore, there is no fixed age limit to undergo LASIK surgery, and it usually depends on the patient’s medical history and eye health, which will be examined by the surgeon beforehand. Patients with no past concerns such as cataracts or vision loss can safely undergo LASIK. However, it must be understood that laser treatment will not prevent vision loss later in life, and cataract is inevitable. Senior citizens over sixty must be evaluated carefully and properly to rule out any concerns related to their medical history, including eye health.
Hence, there is no specific guideline that every patient must follow, and it differs individually. Moreover, age cannot be a deciding factor with the increased advanced technology. What should be defined before deciding to opt for LASIK surgery is a proper medical examination and eye evaluation. Thus, while a fourteen-year-old is ideally not recommended to undergo LASIK surgery for justified reasons, if a patient has severe vision problems and is suffering from issues that cannot be corrected with the help of conventional solutions such as eyeglasses or contact lenses, undergoing LASIK surgery is not dangerous or complicated, and is extremely effective if a patient honestly follows the guidelines by the surgeon.