Laser vision correction is elective outpatient surgery. It can correct “refractive” problems such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. Millions of people in the U.S. have chosen to have this life-changing surgery. It allows you to enjoy hiking, golfing, biking, swimming, skiing, and other sports without glasses or contacts!
LASIK is the most common type of refractive surgery. It uses laser technology to reshape the cornea and enable light rays to be focused into a crisp image. Since laser vision correction surgery was introduced nearly two decades ago, there have been major advancements in technology. This has resulted in enhanced safety and visual outcomes. Having LASIK is a big decision and a significant financial investment. It is important to choose a well-trained surgeon who strives for excellent outcomes with every patient.
Barsam Vision Care and Aesthetics patients can have complete confidence in the safety and quality of the procedure. Dr. Charles Barsam is a fellowship-trained specialist with over fifteen years of experience and expertise in laser eye surgery.
Besides a life free of glasses and contacts, the benefits of getting LASIK include:
Clear, natural vision
No more discomfort with glasses or contacts while enjoying outdoor activities
Better vision for night driving
Eliminating the significant ongoing costs of glasses and contacts
Convenience while traveling
Dr. Barsam achieves excellent clinical results and patient satisfaction with the improvement in their nearsightedness. It is important to discuss your goals and expectations with Dr. Barsam during your LASIK consultation.
Patients who have low to moderate nearsightedness usually have the most success with cutting out glasses or contacts. Patients with severe nearsightedness and a strong prescription will see improvement. It's important to note that they may not be able to achieve 20/20 vision.
It is important to understand that a standard LASIK procedure cannot correct for presbyopia. Presbyopia occurs when the lens loses its flexibility due to age.
This happens to most people when they reach the age of 40 or older. Most LASIK patients still need reading glasses for reading or close work. LASIK will not correct for future vision problems, only current refractive errors.
To find out if you are a candidate for LASIK eye surgery, you will need a complete eye examination with Dr. Barsam. There are different types of eye vision correction procedures depending on the condition of your eyes, and the costs may vary. He will explain which procedure is best for you.
If you find the cost of LASIK concerning, remember that refractive surgery is a permanent solution. Thanks to LASIK, most people are able to cut out expensive glasses and contacts.
LASIK sounds expensive because it is one “lump sum” charge. If you add up your costs for eye exams, glasses, or contact lenses and solutions over ten years, you will find that LASIK is an investment that will actually save you money!learn more about financing
For the best results, skilled surgeons need to work with the best tools offered by advanced technology. Dr. Barsam uses the state-of-the-art eye surgical suite at Mass. Eye and Ear in Waltham. He has worked with the same experienced clinical team there for many years.
LASIK is a simple outpatient procedure that takes less than a half-hour to perform. Most patients have the procedure in both eyes on the same day. Plan to arrive at the eye surgery center one hour before your procedure. If you're nervous, your doctor may offer you a sedative to help you relax.
You will sit in a reclining chair, where the area around your eyes will be cleaned. A sterile drape will then be applied around the eye. Your doctor will administer drops that numb your eye so that you can be awake but comfortable during the procedure. Dr. Barsam will use a femtosecond laser that rapidly cuts a precise flap in the cornea. You may feel a little pressure, but no pain. You will then be asked to look at a target light while a second excimer laser makes the necessary adjustments to the shape of the cornea. The protective layer of the cornea is then folded back where it will heal without stitches.
No, LASIK is not recommended for everyone. Dr. Barsam will do a thorough eye examination and medical history before determining that you are a good candidate for LASIK. Patients with the following conditions should probably not have LASIK surgery:
Thin corneas, often associated with aging
Keratoconus (bulging of the cornea into a cone-like shape)
Autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis
Eye diseases such as glaucoma, keratitis, and uveitis
Persistent dry eye
Weakened immune system
Pregnancy and other hormonal changes
PRK, or photorefractive keratectomy, is another type of refractive surgery developed before LASIK. It is still commonly performed and offers some advantages over LASIK to certain patients.
There are some distinct benefits to PRK. It is usually the best treatment for patients with thin corneas. There is no risk of complications from creating a corneal flap.
The main difference between LASIK and PRK occurs in the initial part of the procedure. With PRK, there is no corneal flap created. Instead, the thin outer layer of the cornea known as the epithelium gets removed. After removing the epithelium, it's then discarded before reshaping the cornea with the excimer laser. This reshaping of the cornea allows for light rays to be focused in a crisp image on the retina. The epithelium grows back in a few days after surgery. The second part of the surgery with the excimer laser is essentially the same for LASIK and PRK.
The final results of PRK are comparable to LASIK. Vision improvement with LASIK is usually faster, whereas PRK can take a few weeks. PRK recovery may take several days, and the healing process is a little slower. Patients may be more uncomfortable until the epithelium grows back as the eyes may feel scratchy and irritated.
Looking to learn more about laser vision correction procedures? Schedule an appointment at Barsam Vision Care and Aesthetics Center in Waltham, MA today!
Barsam Vision Care + Aesthetics Center
135 Beaver Street, Suite 309
Waltham, MA 02452