LASIK is a type of refractive surgery. Its popularity is largely due to how effective it is at correcting refractive errors like nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. It is also fast, usually taking less than thirty minutes to complete.
However, people are often concerned that LASIK will only last a few years, putting them back where they started just as they are getting used to their new vision. LASIK is actually intended to be a permanent solution to refractive errors.
While it cannot prevent other vision problems like cataracts or glaucoma, the effects of LASIK surgery last a lifetime. It’s easy to understand why once you know how LASIK works.
What is LASIK?
LASIK is a laser-assisted refractive surgery designed to correct vision. The highly trained LASIK surgeons at Frantz Eyecare use powerful laser and computer technology to deliver fast and accurate vision improvements.
After LASIK, most people no longer need glasses or are much less dependent on them. LASIK surgery is designed to reshape the cornea.
The cornea is the clear dome of tissue at the front of your eyes. This tissue serves many purposes, including bending or refracting the light that passes through it.
The cornea is curved like a magnifying glass. When light passes through it, it is focused through the pupil and again through the lens.
Ultimately, it should land directly onto the retina, a light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye. The cornea is responsible for most of the focusing power in the eye.
If the cornea is not the correct shape, the light that passes through it could come into focus before reaching the retina, behind the retina, or it could focus into multiple points inside the eye.
This causes a refractive error, makes vision blurry, and can make it difficult or impossible to see clearly without visual aids.
What Happens During LASIK?
LASIK surgery is fast but requires a skilled surgeon to perform. Reshaping the cornea is a science and needs to be done carefully with the right equipment.
First, your eyes will be numbed with anesthetic drops. Your LASIK surgeon will want to ensure you are as comfortable as possible during your procedure.
The cornea is not reshaped from the outside in. Instead, the surgeon reshapes the center of the cornea, allowing the top to take the shape of the tissue underneath.
The cornea is separated into layers, and the middle layer happens to be the thickest. Using a femtosecond laser, your LASIK surgeon will create an opening in the top layer of the cornea.
The top tissue is left connected, creating a tiny flap. Once your LASIK surgeon makes the necessary corrections in the middle layer using an excimer laser, this flap can be carefully closed.
The flap takes the shape of the tissue underneath and rapidly reattaches. This dramatically reduces recovery time, making it faster and easier to heal.
LASIK fundamentally changes the way your eyes see so you are able to live life with greater visual freedom. While it cannot prevent you from developing other issues with your vision, most people enjoy the benefits of LASIK for a lifetime.
Do you want to learn more about LASIK? Schedule a LASIK consultation at Frantz Eyecare in Fort Myers, FL, today to find out if LASIK is right for you!