What can I expect at my Lasik evaluation
With modern anesthetic protocols, Lasik is generally considered to be a painless procedure. During the process of creating the Lasik flap, whether done with an iFS Advance Femtosecond laser or a microkeratome, most people will notice a “pressure” in the eye. Generally speaking, this “pressure” is typically not considered by patients to be “pain” any more than the pressure felt from the inflation of the blood pressure cuff is “painful” when the doctor or nurse is taking your blood pressure. For the iFS laser, the pressure sensation will typically last about 20 seconds.
Once the Lasik procedure is completed, anti-inflammatory and antibiotic eye drops are instilled and you are sent home wearing a pair of goggles. You are also given a sedative and a pain reliever to help to get you to sleep. Most patients fall asleep very soon after the Lasik procedure and report no significant pain. If however, you do not or cannot get to sleep you may experience a mild to moderate burning sensation in the eyes for approximately 3 hours. Once the 3 hours has past, the potential for pain subsides.
At Will Vision and Laser Centers all of your pre-operative and postoperative care is at no additional charge. This is true even if you see us months or years following your procedure. In addition, there is never any charge for ancillary procedures, although rare, such as the instillation of punctal plugs in the case of dry eye.
Typically the only additional costs for Lasik or PRK include the preservative free artificial tears used pre and post-operatively and the prescription eye drops for preventing infection and inflammation. The preservative free artificial tears are available at your local supermarket, pharmacy and big retailer such as Costco for approximately $15. In addition, you will be given a prescription for a steroid anti-inflammatory eye drop and antibiotic eye drop that you will use post-operatively. The cost will vary depending on your drug coverage with your medical insurance plan and the prevailing charge for a generic medication at your preferred pharmacy. Costs for these prescription drops can range widely so it may pay to call several pharmacies to find the best pricing.
Typically we would like to see you on the first postoperative day for a simple check of your vision and the health of the eye. If you have prearranged to see a qualified eye care provider near you home that responsibility can be delegated to that eye doctor. In either case, you may fly in an airplane as soon as you feel comfortable after Lasik. For most people that would be the following day.
Lasik surgery does not affect the strength of the eye to any significant degree nor does physical exertion have any adverse effect on healing. As a result, you may result strenuous exercise immediately following Lasik. The only restriction would be to wear protective eye wear if you are participating in a sport such as basketball or soccer where it might be possible to be poked in the eye. We also advise against swimming or going into a hot tub for 2 weeks following Lasik. That will allow the flap to seal well at the edges and reduce any chance of an infection from bacterial contaminants in the pool or hot tub water.
We typically recommend that women refrain from using eye make-up such as mascara for three days following Lasik. Using that regimen, we have never seen a complication related to the use of eye make-up in over 25 years.
Most people can see immediately after surgery, and any soreness or redness should be gone in about a week. The cornea does most of its significant healing during the first two to four weeks after surgery; however, full recovery takes three to six months.
It’s common for LASIK patients to experience some vision fluctuations during this time. Still, overall, your vision should continue to improve while your eyes are healing.
After Dr. Will has completed your LASIK procedure, you’ll take a few minutes to rest with your eyes closed. Then, he’ll perform a quick eye exam to measure your visual acuity and ensure the corneal flaps are lying as they should. Finally, Dr. Will may administer anti-inflammatory or steroid eye drops, and you’ll be free to go home to recover.
No. You should have a responsible adult accompany you to the clinic and drive you home after LASIK surgery. Specific aspects of the procedure can make driving unsafe.
For example, your eyes will be more sensitive to light than usual. Also, as the numbing eye drops wear off, your eyes may water and sting, affecting your ability to drive responsibly. Immediately following LASIK, your vision can quickly fluctuate from clear to blurry. You don’t want that to happen while driving.
Yes, using all the eye drops Dr. Will prescribes is crucial. You will need to use anti-inflammatory and antibacterial eye drops for five to seven days, and artificial tears for several weeks.
Depending on the technique Dr. Will uses, you may have red spots on the whites of your eyes after LASIK. These spots are typically broken blood vessels caused by suction ring pressure used to hold the eyes still during surgery. If you follow Dr. Will’s recovery instructions, they should heal in a week or two.
The Future's Right Before Your Eyes!
If you’re ready to take the next step in your journey to better vision, contact Will Vision & Laser Centers today. We’re excited to welcome you into our practice and for you to “See the Difference.”