LASIK is a procedure that reshapes the cornea to improve vision.
LASIK can treat nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism.
These are conditions that require the use of glasses and contact lenses for
clear vision. With some exceptions, LASIK generally treats myopia between -0.5
and -10 diopters, hyperopia between +0.5 and +6.0 diopters, and astigmatism
between 0.5 and 6.0 diopters.
Patients who have had previous eye surgery may qualify for LASIK. LASIK can
be performed after previous radial keratotomy (RK), photorefractive keratotomy
(PRK), and cataract surgery. LASIK can be performed on "lazy eyes" and eyes
Alternative Procedures to LASIK
1. Visian ICL
Visian ICL is a non-laser procedure that corrects vision by placing a tiny
lens behind the pupil of the eye. Patients cannot feel nor see the lens and
it provides an exceptional level of vision quality (“Hi-Def Vision”)
compared to other procedures. Also if patients have thin corneas or moderate
to high amounts of nearsightedness, the Visian ICL may be the able to correct
eyesight when LASIK is not appropriate. The recovery of vision is just as quick
as LASIK. More information is at www.iclinformation.com.
For lower degrees of nearsightedness (less than -3.00 diopters), Intacs-micro
precision implants placed within the cornea, which sharpens vision by flattening
the cornea-may be an option. Intacs micro-prescription inserts are removable
and exchangeable, and this procedure avoids operating in the center of the cornea.
Intacs can be performed in patients with keratoconus as well.
For lower degrees of farsightedness (up to +1.50), CK uses a radiofrequency
energy probe to heat specific areas of the cornea to change it’s shape
and sharpen vision. CK can also be used for presbyopia (monovision).
4. No-Cut LASEK
For the same range of LASIK, No-Cut LASEK is an alternative to LASIK. The difference
is that there is no flap of the stroma of the cornea. The surface skin is loosened
with a solution and moved to the side. The top of the cornea is reshaped with
the same laser used in LASIK. The skin is replaced, thereby covering the cornea.
The recovery of vision is slower, but the end result can be predicted to be
similar to LASIK. This is an alternative for patients uncomfortable with the
flap aspect of LASIK.
Even though glasses or contact lens prescriptions may fall within the diopter
ranges above, there are conditions that make these procedures inappropriate
until the conditions are treated or resolved. These include:
Visually significant cataract
Retinal tears and detachments
For purposes of this CONSUMER REPORT, LASIK will be emphasized as it represents
the majority of vision correction procedures performed.