Every year a number of people around the world go through LASIK eye surgery to correct the common refractive errors such as myopia (near-sightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), presbyopia (loss of near vision with age), and astigmatism. This surgery helps the patients to get rid of the irritating eye-wears such as contact lenses and eye glasses.
LASIK eye surgery uses laser beams for the surgery which is comparatively safer than the conventional vision correction eye surgeries. Most of the patients who have already been through this surgery have got a perfect clear vision of 40/40. So, for the ones who are depended on eye-wears this surgery is life-changing process.
In this article, we have explained all those stages you will face for your ‘life-changing LASIK eye surgery’.
The immense nervousness before the surgery
No matter what kind of surgery or medical operation, you will feel some sort of nervousness even if you are brave heart. Since you may never know what exactly can happen during your surgery or what may be the outcome? The curiosity of knowing what will happen after surgery is enough to make a person worried. However, if you already know about the procedures, you may be going through then you will feel more confident!
Tips to overcome the nervousness before the surgery:
- Talk to your ophthalmologist and ask your doubts about the surgery.
- Study about the LASIK eye surgery procedure on the Internet to know about what things you might be facing during the operation.
- If you know anyone who has already been through this surgery, it’s better to talk to them about it.
All these things will motivate you and boost your confidence about facing the surgery.
The pre-surgery eye examination
For any patient who is ready to go through the LASIK eye surgery experience, have to go through several pre-surgery eye examinations. The tests will start months prior to the actual surgery. There are generally three main tests which include scanning and mapping of your eyes to understand the topology of your cornea and create an “eye map” which will be used as a reference for the surgery.
You may have to go through these tests several times since the surgeons would want to avoid any kind of inaccuracy in the surgery. Moreover, you may also have to go through regular eye check-ups. Since there will be so many check-ups and tests, so you need not worry about getting unsatisfactory vision after the surgery.
The LASIK eye surgery
After all the tests, your ophthalmologist will decide whether you are ready for the surgery since not everyone qualifies the tests due to weak eye condition or poor health condition.
The LASIK eye surgery is not a time taking surgery and takes only 10 minutes, yes, 10 minutes! 5 minutes for each eye.
What happens prior to the surgery?
First, they will give you a drug to relax for the surgery since you won’t be unconscious in this surgery like the other operations. So, being relaxed is step to get a successful surgery.
When you will enter the surgery room, all you need to do is remain calm and trust your surgeon. As all surgeons are quite experienced so you need not worry about anything going wrong. The surgeon would also have friendly chat with you before the surgery to help you feel relaxed about the whole surgery.
For the surgery, first you will have to go through a short re-test of your eyes to ensure for the last time whether your eyes are ready to endure the surgery. If they feel your eyes are good, then they will start the surgery.
- You will settle down on the operation chair which will be attached to a machine. This instrument will help you to keep your eyes open throughout the surgery.
- Next anaesthetic would be used to numb your eyes so that you won’t feel any kind of pain during the surgery.
- You will be asked to look into an orange light which will be focused into your eyes.
- The rest of the job will be done by your surgeon.
What exactly will your surgeon do to your eyes?
- Your surgeon will use either a mechanical surgical instrument called microkeratome or femtosecond laser to create a thin ‘flap’ in your cornea portion.
- He/she will then fold back this hinged flap to get access to the cornea portion which is called stroma.
- He will carefully remove required microscopic amount of cornea tissue using an excimer laser. This will reshape the cornea and help the light to focus on the retina accurately and hence you will get a clearer vision.
- If you are myopic then your cornea will be flattened and if you are hyperopic (farsighted) then your cornea would be made steeper as required.
- This Excimer laser is also specialized to correct astigmatism by smoothing the irregular shaped cornea.
- After your cornea is reshaped using the laser, the created flap will be placed back in its position.
- Your eyes will then heal naturally and you will get improved vision.
What are the things you should not be scared about while the surgery is going on?
- When your surgeon will use microkeratome which uses a fine disposable blade on your cornea, you may feel terrified. However, it’s nothing to be worried about.
- While the surgery goes on, for a second or two your vision might completely black out but it will come back as soon as the surgery is completed.
- There will be several sounds which may give you a fright but that’s just the laser working.
- The whole procedure is computer tracked so you won’t need to worry about any mishap.
- The surgery will be very quick and you won’t feel any kind of pain throughout the process.
What happens when the surgery will be over?
- After your surgery is over, your eyes will be rechecked by the surgeon and if everything is fine, he or she will let you know about it.
- You will be then led out in the waiting room where you will be given an eye-guard to cover your eye and eye-drops for healing.
- You will also be given a post-operation instruction about how to take care of your eyes for few days till your eyes heal naturally.
- The next day, there will be another eye check-up to check on the healing of the eye and in few days your vision will improve.
Conclusion: LASIK eye surgery is a very safe and efficient eye surgery for refractive error correction. Although, you may have to go through a number of tests before and after the surgery but it will be worthy. After the surgery, your vision will slowly improve. You won’t get a perfect 40/40 vision on the next day of the surgery. But you will surely attain the vision after few days. Other than that, for few days you may get blurry vision, halos and weak night vision, but as soon as your eyes fully heal these complications will fade away.