Laser eye surgery is not for everyone. Here are six guidelines to help you decide if LASIK is right for you:
• Are your eyes healthy? If you have any condition that can affect how your eyes respond to surgery or heal afterwards, wait until that condition has resolved. Examples include chronic dry eyes, conjunctivitis (“pink eye”), and/or any eye injury. Some conditions such as cataracts, keratoconus, and uncontrolled glaucoma may disqualify you completely.
• Are you an adult? You need to be at least 21 years of age to have LASIK.
• Is your vision stable? Many teenagers and young adults experience changes in their prescription for eyeglasses or contact lenses from year to year, especially if they are nearsighted. Make sure your prescription is stable for at least a twelve month period before having LASIK. If it is not yet stable and you proceed anyway, you may need another surgery next year!
• Are you pregnant? Hormonal changes during pregnancy can cause swelling of your cornea which can then alter your vision. Dry eyes are also common when you are pregnant. The eye medications used during and after LASIK may be risky for your unborn baby or whether you are nursing. Wait several months after your baby is born before having LASIK. If you have any questions about how long you should wait, ask your eye doctor.
• Certain systemic and autoimmune diseases may cause you to not be a good candidate for LASIK. Examples include rheumatoid arthritis, type 1 diabetes, HIV and AIDS. Basically, if your body has any trouble with healing, your cornea may not heal properly after LASIK. Opinions vary among surgeons as to which diseases are automatic disqualifiers and which ones might pose acceptable risks in certain cases.
• Your prescription must be within certain limits. For example, very high amounts of myopia, which would require removal of too much corneal tissue, may preclude LASIK or make another type of refractive surgery a better option. For example, some surgeons feel a phakic IOL procedure provides a better visual outcome and poses less risk than LASIK for nearsighted prescriptions higher than -9.00 diopters.
To find out if you are a good candidate for LASIK, please call our office at 512-255-7070 and schedule your free consultation.