The following is an outline of the basic steps of a typical LASIK procedure:
Patient is positioned under the laser and, for practice purposes, is
directed to look at a specific light.
Anesthetic drops are used to numb the eye so there is little or no pain.
Eyelids and lashes are cleaned; they are covered and held open (with
drapes and a gentle eyelid holder) so they are out of the surgical field.
Cornea is marked to assist the surgeon in realigning the flap at the
end of the procedure.
A suction ring is placed on the eye, giving a little squeezing sensation
to hold the eye steady; lights usually disappear for a few seconds.
Microkeratome, or "flapmaker," is used to make the flap.
Surgeon centers the laser (even if an eye-tracking laser is used, it
is surgeon's responsibility to properly center laser beam).
Laser is activated while surgeon carefully watches patient's eye to be
sure it remains in position.
Flap is repositioned so surface is smooth; inner surface is rinsed.
Drapes and eyelid holder are removed.
Antibiotic and anti-inflammatory drops are started.