Lasik is the short form for Laser-in-situ-Keratomileusis. It involves cutting the corneal flap in-situ to work upon the cornea that is also called Keratomileusis, hence deriving its name.
The process uses a highly evolved laser called “Excimer Laser” to reshape the cornea to correct the refractive error, enhance vision and remove the need to wear contact lenses or the eyeglasses. Cornea is the front transparent portion of the eye and doctor can reshape it using laser such that the light is focused better on retina thereby improving vision.
The Lasik treatment is attributed to one Pallikaris from Greece, who invented this method in 1991. Since then it has evolved considerably to become the most sought after treatment for correcting refractory errors in the eyes.
The operation is simple. The surgeon uses either a mechanical tool or a laser to cut the cornea flap and then folds it backwards exposing the cornea tissue. Then by using the Excimer, the cornea tissue is ablated to give it the required shape so as to focus the light better on the retina. After correction, the cornea flap is repositioned and allowed to heal on its own. The vision is normally restored in 24 hours after the operation and eyes heal fully in few weeks.
For any patient to undergo Lasik, there are a set of precautions to be followed to get the best out of the treatment. Let us discuss these precautions in the form of a checklist.
- You must get the refractive error of the eye checked properly. For this, stop wearing contact lens few weeks before check up day.
- Educate yourself with all the treatment methods available and choose the one that is best suited to your needs.
- There are many lasers in use and keep yourself aware of the laser that will be used for your treatment with reasons.
- Get all other health issues checked as blood pressure, blood sugar, etc. to know if you are the right person for such surgery.
- Also consider other related issues like the leaves that you can take from your job, time required for getting stable vision, other medical history or eye diseases that you may have, your age, the thickness of the cornea, its shape and curvature, the size of the pupil, moistness in the eyes and earlier history of any similar or another eye surgery.
- Get yourself fully acquainted with the risks involved in the process and weigh down with benefits, to decide if it is worth taking the risk. Some risks that are involved in the process are under correction, over correction, need of glasses or contact lenses even after the operation, the results may not remain permanent, dryness in eyes after operation, visual aberrations as halo or light sensitivity after the operation. In rarest cases, one can also loose vision.
- Take pains to find the right doctor. Choose one that is experienced, reputed, has access to the best of equipments and technology and is easily available to handle any complications after the surgery, if any such situation may arise. Never fall for guarantees, as it has no value in case of any surgery.
- Acquaint yourself fully of the precautions and care to be taken after the surgery. If you do not follow the precaution then even the best of doctor, equipments or the hospital will be of any use.
Only when you follow the above checklist, you can be sure that Lasik will give you the best of results and you will get rid of the contact lenses or glasses for ever.