LASIK is a surgical procedure intended to reduce a person's dependency on glasses or contact lenses. It is used to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. This procedure is focused on correcting the abnormalities on cornea. Cornea is the transparent front part of the eye that covers the iris, pupil, and anterior chamber.
The main purpose of the cornea is to focus light to create an image on the retina. Sometimes, the shape of cornea is not perfect so that the image on retina may seem to be blurred or distorted. These abnormalities are known as refractive errors such as: myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism. Glasses or contact lenses are designed and used to compensate for the eye's imperfections. LASIK surgery, however, focuses on reshaping of the cornea and changing its focusing capacity.
Is LASIK Eye Surgery for You?
A set of general guidelines determines if one is a right candidate for LASIK eye surgery. If one decides to have a LASIK surgery, he or she will need a baseline doctor’s evaluation to determine if they are a good candidate. To get the most accurate evaluation, one should stop wearing contact lenses a couple of weeks before the initial testing, and switch to wearing glasses.
Proper candidate for LASIK should have healthy eyes and shouldn’t have any condition that can affect how eyes respond to surgery or heal afterward. Any kind of injury, conjunctivitis or dry eyes condition is considered risky. The candidate should also have a stable vision for at last a year. Moreover, patient should be an adult, not pregnant and shouldn’t have any kind of degenerative or autoimmune disease.
While pregnancy can affect healing process by abnormal hormonal levels, various diseases can also cause bad surgery outcomes. Certain medications, for example retinoic acid and steroids, may also prevent proper healing after a refractive procedure. People prescribed with this kind of medications are probably not good candidates for LASIK surgery.
How LASIK Eye Surgery Works?
LASIK surgery is performed in three stages. The first stage involves making a thin flap in the cornea using either a microkeratome blade or a femtosecond laser. The second step is the remodeling of the cornea, and the third step involves repositioning of the flap and laying it back in place to cover the area where the corneal tissue was removed.
The specific correction depends on the patient’s condition. For nearsighted people, for example, the aim of LASIK surgery is to flatten the cornea that is overly steep. For farsighted people, the aim of surgery will be to make a steeper cornea. LASIK can also correct astigmatism by smoothing an unequal cornea into a more regular shape.