When you get to know that there is an awesome procedure called LASIK to get rid of your ugly and irritating glasses and contacts then you must be eager to get it done. But before opting for this popular surgical procedure which has high success rate, you should know if you are a good Lasik eye surgery candidate or not?
Yeah, you heard it right. You must qualify for this surgery by going through an extensive eye examination. However, the brighter side is that only a fraction of the patients get disqualified during the ‘pre-tests’ and these people also have other options for correcting their refractive errors like PRK or LASEK which are equally effective as Lasik.
So, what are these ‘PRE-TEST’ mentioned above?
LASIK surgery is not only about the surgical procedure but it actually takes place in three stages:
1) Pre-tests surgery
2) post-surgery tests.
In the beginning of your LASIK experience, your ophthalmologist or lasik surgeon will suggest you to go through several pre-surgical examinations. In these tests, they will check and re-check whether your eyes are healthy enough to withstand the whole surgery. You will be checked to determine the eligibility for the surgery which includes:
- Age and prescription stability
- Overall eye health condition
- Presence of any prior infection or disease
- Overall health condition
- Meeting FDA guidelines
There are many patients who have thinner cornea, have glaucoma, inflammation etc. so for them, LASIK isn’t the best type of vision correcting surgery! However, if you have a perfect eye condition, the eye examiner will make an ‘eye-map’ of your eyes for the surgery which is also included in the ‘PRE-TEST’ of the LASIK.
What are the criteria for becoming a right candidate for the surgery?
- AGE: Your age should be at least over 18 for the surgery. If you are over 21 years old then you are candidate for the surgery. Your eyes can withstand the surgery for mild or severe refractive errors only if your eye power is stable. (Your vision should be stable for at least a year)
- EYE CONDITION: To go through the surgery, your eyes should be completely healthy without any kind of corneal abnormalities or infections of any sort. Your prescription for distance vision needs to match a certain minimal strength as mentioned by the FDA. Your pupils shouldn’t be larger than 8.5mm in the dark because if it’s larger it may increase the chances of halos, weakened night vision and glares at night.
- HEALTH CONDITION: If you have uncontrolled diabetes, certain rheumatologic conditions such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, Sjorgens Disease then you won’t qualify for the LASIK. You cannot have LASIK if you are pregnant or a nursing mother.
- TYPE OF PROFESSION: Some jobs are risky for LASIK operated eyes because of the chances of eye injury like professional boxing, wrestling, defence services. Therefore you need to consult with your surgeon in detail about the post surgical risks and ask questions like should I really get Lasik even if my profession increase the risks of surgery? What will happen if I get eye injury after the surgery? You must clear all your doubts before agreeing for the procedure.
NOTE:If you already had a vision correcting surgery before, then you should definitely let your surgeon know about it.
What happens if you do not qualified for the surgery but you still go through the surgery?
There have been several cases where the patients were put through the surgery even when he or she hasn’t qualified for it. These happened either due to the mistake of the surgeon or since the patient was ready to accept the consequences of his or her decision. In such cases, the visions don’t get better rather there are chances they might get much poorer vision than they had previously. Otherwise you may also end up with one correct eye and one poor vision eye which is more problematic!
As a whole, in such cases you will have to carry on using your glasses and contacts like you used too. Therefore, it’s suggested that you don’t go for the surgery if your surgeon disqualifies you for it.
Do the disqualified patients have any other option?
If you don’t pass the eligibility test, you need to know about the reason behind it. When you learn about it in detail, you must visit a good ophthalmologist and ask if there is any other kind of vision correcting eye surgery which your eyes can withstand.
In most of the cases, patients who don’t qualify for the surgery due to some improper eye condition, have some or other option. Therefore, you need not panic if such thing happens to you!
Summary: Since LASIK is such a popular and easy eye surgical procedure, everyone is interested in having it and getting rid of their glasses and contacts. But unfortunately, LASIK isn’t for everyone. Only pre-tests can verify whether a patient is eligible for the surgery or not. If in any case there is any kind of mistake during the pre-test the whole surgery can go to waste. Therefore, both the patient and the surgeon should remain careful about the whole thing. It is also necessary for the patient to gather as much knowledge as he or she can about the whole LASIK thing. Only precautions, proper pre-operational tests and strict following of instruction ensure a successful outcome of LASIK surgery.
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