Understanding LASIK Benefits and Risks

Video: Christy - LASIK Patient


Christy had been wearing glasses and contacts since the age of 8. She decided to have LASIK after the birth of her son, because she wanted to be able to see him when she woke up in the morning. Dr. Holcomb and the entire staff were wonderful and made sure she knew what to expect throughout the whole process, and she couldn't be happier with the results.

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Holcomb Laser Center uses the latest techniques in LASIK surgery, including iLASIK and digital WaveScan. With iLASIK, surgery is a completely blade-free procedure. WaveScan more accurately measures the amount of farsightedness, nearsightedness, and astigmatism, and transmits the information directly to the laser.

Do you wear glasses or contacts? Would you prefer a permanent solution to your vision impairment? Thanks to advancements in modern technology, LASIK can correct the corneal imperfections that cause hyperopia, myopia, and astigmatism. As with any surgery, it is important that patients understand LASIK benefits and risks. Contact our Cullman office today to learn more about LASIK surgery and determine whether this surgery is right for you.

What Are the Risks of LASIK?

Although LASIK has been performed safely on millions of patients, and is FDA approved for vision enhancement, LASIK surgery does carry some risks. However, by choosing a highly trained, experienced LASIK surgeon, you greatly reduce the chances of an unsuccessful surgery or disappointing results. Potential risks and side effects related to LASIK include:

  • Undercorrection: In very rare cases, patients may not experience the vision improvement they expected.
  • Need for Follow-up Surgery: Your vision degenerates naturally as you age. A very small percentage of patients may require follow-up surgery.
  • Dry Eye: You may experience dry eye following surgery. This treatable condition involves chronic redness and irritation.
  • Epithelial Ingrowths: Sometimes new epithelial cells will begin to grow after the corneal flap is replaced, blurring vision.
  • Infection: Left untreated, an eye infection can have serious results.To prevent these infections, Dr. Holcomb generally prescribes antibiotic drops to use following surgery.
  • Diffuse Lamellar Keratitis: This condition occurs when a foreign object becomes trapped between the corneal flap and cornea, causing pain or distorted vision.
  • Corneal Islands: Corneal islands result in raised tissue upon the cornea that occur when corneal tissue is not uniformly removed.

Your surest means of reducing these risks is to choose an experienced and reputable surgeon.

What are the Benefits of LASIK?

While every surgery carries risks of complications, Dr. Holcomb has an excellent history providing patients safe, effective LASIK treatment. Consider the following:

  • Ninety-nine percent of Dr. Holcomb's nearsighted patients no longer need glasses or contacts following surgery.
  • NInety-four percent of patients achieve 20/20 vision after LASIK.
  • LASIK actually changes your vision, rather than adjusting it temporarily as with glasses or contacts.
  • LASIK heals naturally, so patients do not require stitches.
  • Recovery time is short. Vision usually begins to improve between one and three days, with final results becoming apparent by three months after surgery.
  • Patients can return to work after 24 hours.
  • Patients can go about normal activities such as exercise the day after surgery, as long as they avoid placing pressure on their eyes for several days.

Macro image of human eye

In addition to LASIK surgery, Dr. Holcomb also performs photorefractive keratectomy surgery, or PRK. This refractive surgery similarly corrects myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism, but can be administered to patients who have corneas that are too thin for LASIK surgery.

Schedule Your Appointment Today

Have you been thinking about choosing LASIK to improve your vision? To learn more about the risks and benefits associated with LASIK, schedule a free screening at Holcomb Laser Center today. Dr. Holcomb is glad to answer your questions and determine if LASIK or PRK is right for you.

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