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Laser Vision Correction
We work closely with surgeons that are the best in the field and who use the latest in technology, assuring the most accurate end result. They do all the pre surgical measurements, as well as the post-surgical care for their LASIK patients. Their data input, together with the surgeon’s provide an excellent safety net, assuring that the most accurate information is entered into the computers that generate the Eximer Laser. Having their patients’ past eye history on file is also extremely valuable.
Our doctors will evaluate any patient as a potential candidate. On assessing an individual’s circumstances and needs, they will advise of the benefits, risks and best laser vision correction options.
Who is a LASIK candidate?
- Patients over 21 years of age with a glasses prescription that has remained stable over 2 years
- Patients who are myopic (nearsighted)
- Patients who are moderately hyperopic, although hyperopia does tend to creep back with time.
- Patients with less than 4 diopters of astigmatism
- Patients with overall healthy eyes and adequate corneal thickness
LASIK DOES NOT CORRECT PRESBYOPIA (the inability to read up close over the age of 40)
What are the risks and side effects LASIK?
Although the potential for complications is small, unforeseen complications may occur with LASIK as can occur with any surgery. As Eximer Lasers have improved over the years and now that a new laser had become the standard for corneal flap creation, LASIK complications have lessened even further.
The most common problems reported with LASIK include:
- Halos, starburst images and glare around bright lights at night
- Blurred vision, including night vision problems
- Dry eyes
These side effects are temporary with most patients and the vast majority of LASIK patients are very satisfied with their surgical outcome. Several independent clinical studies report that the chance of having a vision reducing complication is less than 1%. Keep in mind that laser vision correction procedures have a short history of only about 13 years. While the current evidence looks very promising, no one can say what complication, if any, will occur for LASIK patients 20 or 30 years down the road. LASIK is an elective procedure and other options for correcting refractive errors i.e. glasses and contact lenses are good alternatives.
Will I need glasses after the LASIK procedure?
Patients over the age of 40 will still need reading glasses after LASIK. Laser surgery corrects distance vision only and at this time, no surgery exists to correct for presbyopia. Sorry presbyopes!!!
Today, it is unusual for patients not to correct to a distance vision level of 20/20 and it is rare for one to need glasses for distance vision after LASIK. 99% of patients attain 20/40 unaided vision, which means that in Texas glasses will not be needed to pass a driving vision test. Statistics indicate that post LASIK correction and visual quality is slightly less than pre surgery spectacle corrected vision. Enhancement surgery or light spectacle prescription lenses may be necessary for patients who are not happy with their initial outcome.
In order to attain an accurate result, Dr. Stokol and his Associates perform a careful, thorough pre-LASIK examination, which includes more than one refraction. A thorough eye health evaluation and topography are also done as part of a pre-Lasik work up. Corneal topography produces an extremely detailed computerized map of the surface of the cornea. Our doctors personally perform all pre-LASIK refractions to ensure accuracy. The surgeon does a second pre LASIK evaluation and this co-management is an important safety factor and a major benefit to the patient. Comparing both the doctor’s numbers is imperative to ensure the accuracy of the final numbers that are entered into the computer at the time of surgery.
LASIK is done on an outpatient basis and the actual procedure only takes about 15 minutes to complete. Some patient anxiety is expected and oral Valium is offered to those who feel the need. Once in the surgical suite, topical anesthetic drops are used to numb the cornea so that the patient feels no pain. Lid retractors are then used to hold back the eyelids. The surgeon then uses a recent breakthrough in laser technology called IntraLase to create a thin flap, which is folded back to expose the layer of the cornea to be treated. IntraLase is a femtosecond laser and replaces the previously used mechanical mircrokeratome. It is much safer than the microkeratome and delivers an accuracy that is 100 times greater, creating a flap of exact diameter, depth, hinge location, centration and an overall more predictable architecture. With IntraLase it is possible to create a thinner and more consistent flap, making LASIK possible for those who are very nearsighted and might otherwise not be candidates for LASIK. Once the flap creation is complete, the Excimer Laser is used to remove corneal tissue based on the amount of myopia that needs to be reversed. The flap is then folded back down and over the next few days, the flap heals and bonds to the cornea. After resting for about twenty minutes, patients can return home. It is important that the patient does not drive on the day of surgery.
We recommend Custom Laser Vision Correction:
Just like a fingerprint, each person’s vision and eye contour is 100 percent unique. CustomVue Lasik is based on Wave Scan/Wave Front technology, which measures and corrects for the unique imperfections of each individual and provides the potential for a more accurate result.
The Wave Scan system compares the reflected wavefronts to the original unaltered wavefronts thus producing a ‘fingerprint’ of the eye. The resulting Wave Print information is then transferred to the Eximer Laser and is used as a guide to reshape the cornea during laser vision treatment.
This technology was originally developed for use in high-powered telescopes to reduce distortions when viewing distant objects in space. By adopting this technology for LASIK, optical distortions unique to the entire optical system can be detected, measured and then corrected for, resulting in better vision than is possible with standard Lasik.
The VISX Star 3 pictured, is an example of the latest Eximer Laser used to perform LASIK surgery.
What is the recovery time?
In one word: Short!
It is necessary to wear protective eye shields while sleeping for one-week post LASIK and antibiotic and anti-inflammatory eye drops will need to be used for four days after the surgery. It is recommended that patients rest for a few days after surgery, avoiding all house and yard work as well. Post surgical evaluations are done by Dr. Stokol and his Associates at one day, seven days, one month, three months, and six months post-op. Drs. Stokol and Associates are on call 24 hours a day should the need arise.
To Schedule an Appointment or to Learn more about Laser Vision Correction, Contact Us Today!
Drs. Stokol and Fagala are thrilled to co-manage LASIK and PRK procedures. Laser vision correction evaluations require specialized testing which can indicate whether a patient is or is not a candidate for surgery. It is preferable to stay out of contact lenses for a few weeks prior to setting up this type of appointment, as the cornea may become molded from contact lens wear. Our staff is well equipped in answering any particular questions you may have during the scheduling process. Don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions regarding laser vision correction procedures.