About Laser surgery
What is Laser surgery?
An introduction to Laser surgery
A laser eye surgery is done to correct the vision of a person so that they no longer need glasses or contact lenses. Laser eye surgery reshapes the cornea, the clear front part of the eye, and helps change its focussing power.
What is laser eye surgery?
Laser eye surgery is basically a broad term for several eye surgeries that help correct refractive errors. The most common types of laser eye surgeries are LASEK, LASIK, Epi LASIK and PRK. Though each surgery has a different procedure, each of these surgeries uses a special laser called excimer laser for reshaping the cornea for enabling the light entering the eye to be properly focussed on the retina for clear vision.
LASIK-LASIK is the most common laser eye surgery. It involves creation of a thin flap in the cornea. The surgeon uses a blade or a laser to make this flap. Once the flap is created, the cornea is re-shaped with the help of excimer laser and this helps correct the refractive error.
LASEK-LASEK is similar to LASIK but the procedure starts with the application of alcohol to the corneal epithelium. This helps loosen the outermost corneal cells and allows the surgeon to move them rather than removing them. After reshaping the cornea, he surgeon replaces the sheet of epithelial cells and puts a contact lens on it for healing. Patients who have thin corneas and are not considered to be ideal candidates for LASIK can get LASEK to improve their vision.
PRK or Photorefractive Keratectomy is yet another popular laser eye surgery. During this surgery, a portion of the surface of the cornea or epithelial tissue is removed. Laser is then used to reshape the cornea. In PRK laser eye surgery, there is no need for flap creation as a result of which the removed tissue grows back quickly. People who do not want a corneal flap or those who have thin corneas are considered to be ideal candidates for PRK.
Epi-LASIK-Epi-LASIK is similar to LASIK. The only difference is that the flap that is created in Epi-LASIK is thinner and is made out of epithelial tissue. Once the flap is created, it is moved aside so that the surgeon can reshape the cornea with the excimer laser. The flap of epithelium is then replaced and covered with a contact-lens bandage for the purpose of healing. Some believe that Epi-LASIK is a mix of LASIK and LASEK. Others however consider that Epi-LASIK is a better option because the flap exists only in the epithelium layer, and there’s no alcohol used during the procedure.
Who is the best candidate?
Anyone who has myopia, hyperopia or has astigmatism can get laser eye surgery to correct his or her vision. It is however recommended that one must be 18 years or older to get laser eye surgery since the eye might still be changing before the age of 18. It is important to have a stable vision for at least a year before having laser eye surgery. Other criterion must be met to be a candidate for LASEK laser eye surgery or LASIK surgery. Only a trained and qualified eye doctor can determine one’s candidacy for laser eye surgery and can best advice as to which laser eye surgery would be the best suited for him/her.
Every surgery involves some risks and laser eye surgery too has its own risks and side-effects. Though the risks and side-effects can vary, depending on the type of laser surgery, some of the risks that are common to laser surgery are Sensation of foreign object in the eye Hazy or cloudy vision Blurred vision Itchiness Burning sensation in the eyes Pain Dry eyes Temporary reduced vision The above side effects can however be minimised if the laser surgery is performed by a qualified and experienced surgeon.
What is the Cost?
The cost of laser eye surgery may vary depending on the type of laser eye surgery, the condition that is being treated, the surgeon, and the location. To get the exact cost, talk to your eye doctor in Australia. He would not only recommend you the best laser eye surgery, depending on your condition, but would also give you the price estimate.