Vision Correction Surgery for Nearsightedness, Farsightedness and Astigmatism
A vision problem can cause a great deal of anxiety and severely impede daily activities. At Athwal Eye Associates, we specialize in vision correction surgery for nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism and cataracts.
LASIK or PRK Laser Eye Surgery
LASIK is a refractive surgical procedure that has become extremely popular thanks to its effectiveness in treating several of the most common eye problems with a low risk of complications. LASIK uses laser assistance to sculpt the corneal tissue so that the eye is better able to focus light rays onto the retina. This procedure can be performed to treat:
- Nearsightedness (a steep cornea is flattened)
- Farsightedness (a flat cornea is steepened)
- Astigmatism (a cornea is reshaped)
IOL stands for intraocular lens, an artificial lens designed to replace the natural lens of a patient suffering from cataracts. IOLs are typically made of silicone or acrylic, and can be monofocal (one focusing distance) or multifocal (both near and far focus). Cataract surgery is one of the safest and most common procedures in the U.S., with more than 3 million surgeries performed each year.
With You Every Step of the Way
If you are considering surgery to correct your vision, you can find comfort in Athwal’s decades of experience with these types of procedures. We pair our expertise with clear communication and a compassionate staff dedicated to ensuring you have a positive experience at our office. Whether you choose to undergo surgery or explore glasses and contact lenses, we are your local eye experts offering every eye care service you might need.
Every surgery performed has some risk. Each individual must weigh the risks with the benefits. Luckily, with refractive surgery, the risk of anything that would decrease vision or cause the vision not to improve is very low (less than 1% chance).
The latest research reports 99 percent of patients achieve better than 20/40 vision and more than 90 percent achieve 20/20 or better. In addition, LASIK has an unprecedented 96 percent patient satisfaction rate – the highest of any elective procedure. (Journal of Cataract & Refractive Surgery, Vol. 42, Issue 8, August 2016, Pages 1224-1234).
PRK (photorefractive keratectomy) is the best laser surgery for vision correction. While LASIK is safe, PRK is even safer because there is no risk of corneal flap dislocation.
PRK is the better option today because the laser surgery is performed on the corneal surface, there is no corneal flap. Over 95% percent of patients are happy with the outcome of laser vision correction surgery. In rare cases a second procedure, or touch-up, may be necessary to achieve the desired visual outcome. Ultimately 99% of patient are able to achieve good vision without glasses.
We no longer perform LASIK as PRK is a safer and more effective vision correction surgery. Prior to PRK, patients must come in for a complete eye exam. If a patient’s eyes are determined to be healthy after a complete exam, the patient will return for a PRK consult, where all the necessary measurements for PRK surgery are done, the surgery is explained in detail, and all patient questions are answered. Patients must discontinue contact lens wear 1-2 weeks prior to having measurements to ensure the measurements are as accurate as possible.
The doctor will numb your eye with a medicine he’ll call a topical anesthetic. The surgery usually takes about 10 minutes, at most — and that’s for both eyes. For LASIK a corneal flap is made. For PRK, the surface epithelium, or “skin,” will be carefully removed to get to the top layer of your eye. Then the doctor will use a laser to reshape it. This laser, which delivers ultraviolet light, is used on the cornea’s surface.
It is important to select a surgeon who is board certified and has extensive experience with PRK surgery.
Surgery to the outside of the eye, often involving the eyelids.
PRK will eliminate the need for contact lenses.
If you are comfortable with contacts and they work for you there is no need for PRK. Many people want to eliminate the use of contacts and therefore can consider PRK.
They are completely different. PRK is performed on the cornea on the outer surface of the eye to correct for myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), or astigmatism. Cataract surgery removes the lens inside the eye that develops a cloudiness (opacification) with age and results in vision loss.
Topography of the cornea is performed and the corneal thickness is measured to determine if the individual is a good candidate for the procedure.