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The risks and benefits of LASIK that you should know

Benefits

According to the Mayo Clinic, about 85% of people who had undergone refractive surgery no longer need to depend on their glasses or contact lenses most of the time. People with a low grade of near-sightedness tend to have the most success, and people with a high degree of far-sightedness with astigmatism have the least predictable results.


Most people who undergo laser eye surgery
no longer need glasses or contacts.

The results you get, of course, will depend on the nature and degree of your vision problems going into surgery and your own eyes’ reaction to laser.

Risks and Complications

We are all well-acquainted with the benefits of Refractive Surgery but what are the risks associated with laser eye surgery? Any surgical procedure carries with it a certain amount of risk, and laser eye surgery is no different.

Some of the risks include:

  • Loss of vision. If things don’t go as planned, some patients emerge from the procedure with vision that’s worse than what they came in with.
  • Development of new visual problems. Some patients may develop glare, haloes, starbursts and double vision as a result of laser eye procedures.
  • Under-correction/Over-correction – Reshaping the cornea is a delicate business. Sometimes the cornea is not reshaped enough—too little material is taken out; sometimes it’s reshaped too much—too much material is taken out.
  • Dry eyes. Some patients report having dry eye after surgery. Although eyedrops (plus a little time for healing) are usually able to overcome or at least help with dry eyes. In some serious cases, special eye plugs are required to prevent tears from draining away from the eyes.
  • Infection and other flap-healing problems. Creating a corneal flap always creates the potential for the flap to dislodge or displace.
  • Results may diminish with time. Although technically not a “risk” of surgery, you should know that even with the best laser eye surgery, the results may not last forever. The cornea continues to age and change shape.

Consult your doctor to ascertain your suitability for LASIK, the potential risks and side effects.

Are there some people who should NEVER have laser eye surgery? Click next to find out.

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