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Ask Tough Questions before Having Custom LASIK Surgery

LASIK surgery has been around for awhile now, but what’s the next new thing? The FDA has recently approved the newest technology of custom LASIK. Custom LASIK is based on the individuality of each eye. Your eyes are not like mine, so why should I be having a one size fits all surgery? Until now, glasses, contacts and conventional surgeries were all similar. Custom LASIK means a measurement of the eye from front to back using wavefront technology that creates a map of the cornea. This 3-D map shows all of the irregularities of the individual corneas. This technology is advanced because it improves the potential for how much you can see, but also how well you can see. It means there is reduced risk of complications such as glare, night vision difficulties and halos that sometimes occur after LASIK. Sometimes patients have vision quality problems when they can’t see in dim light. This is poor contrast sensitivity. Prior to the wavefront technology there was no way to treat these disorders. Now it’s possible to help these patientSs.
Wavefront technology works by the surgeon transmitting a safe ray of light into the eye. The light is reflected off the retina, through the pupil, and into the apparatus, that measures and captures the unique patterns of our eyes. The map is created is electronically transferred to the laser so the surgeon is able to customize the surgery for your particular eye problems. The number of doctors performing this new technology is growing and it generally costs more than traditional LASIK. Sometimes you are not a candidate for any type of refractive surgery so you must make sure you seek out a reputable physician that performs surgery with state of the art equipment. Do some homework of your own before having them perform the surgery. They should pay attention to every detail of the surgery and you as a patient. If you get a gut feeling about the physician or that the center is more of a cookie cutter operation, just beware. Don’t take short cuts when it comes to your vision. Make sure the vision center stands behind your vision results for the rest of your life. If you have a surgery and complications occur, it is much more difficult to correct the problems than if they hadn’t occurred in the first place.
Ask a lot of questions of the surgeon. Your consultation is an important part of the process so take full advantage of it. Here is a list of questions you can ask the surgeon, but don’t limit it to just these if there are other things on your mind:
• Get a list of at least ten patients to contact for referrals.
• What percent of patients have achieved uncorrected visual acuity?
• How long has the physician been performing refractive surgery? Be wary if less than three years
• How many total procedures have they done? Be wary if less than 500
• How many patients have they done with your type of refractive problems? Be wary if less than 100.
• Has the surgeon ever had malpractice insurance denied?
• Has the surgeon ever been convicted of a felony, or have they had their license to practice medicine revoked?

These questions may seem extreme, but I would make totally sure of whom I was dealing with before I let anyone touch my eyes. I need confidence that the surgeon I am talking with is the best one for me and my situation. If not, I would ask for another surgeon or go to another center. LASIK surgery is a wonderful advancement in technology. The new custom LASIK is the next step and who knows what is coming up in the future? Any type of surgery should be taken seriously and know your options before going into it.


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Last modified: 05.22.2008