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Assessing the Risks of LASIK and Touch-Ups

At Marano Eye Care, the mission is simple: provide our patients with the best vision possible, free of pain and discomfort, through the best techniques that ophthalmology has to offer in New Jersey. That’s why when it comes to Lasik, we trust the bladeless technology of Alcon’s Intralase laser.

For some, the fear of LASIK corrective eye surgery may be daunting. The reality is that the technology behind the surgery has become so precise that over 96% of individuals that have the procedure are satisfied with the results, according to the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery.

That said, all Marano Eye Care locations – in Livingston, Cedar Knolls, Newark and Denville, New Jersey – feel it’s important to keep our patients fully informed, no matter the procedure.

Most Common Side Effects From LASIK

No matter which surgery an individual undergoes, there is inherent risk. The good news is that LASIK is one of the safest surgeries that is currently performed – according to the FDA – and takes only about 10 minutes to do per eye. Only in very rare cases does a patient experience worse vision than prior to the surgery. There are some potential side effects, including dry eyes, inflammation of the eye, epithelial ingrowth and double images.

These risks are not only impacted by the surgery and the surgeon, but by any pre-existing eye conditions. So if you regularly experience dry eyes prior to LASIK surgery, you shouldn’t expect that to change after surgery. Please discuss with your LASIK surgeon your eye health in detail before undergoing any eye operation.

Presbyopia and LASIK

Presbyopia is a form of farsightedness that most people will experience during a lifetime. As we age, the lens of the eye becomes less elastic. This makes it more difficult to see items up close. That’s why we see so many middle-aged and elderly people using reading glasses.

If you’re considering LASIK to treat or prevent presbyopia, unfortunately you’re not going to get any results. LASIK does not have any impact on presbyopia, for better or worse. Consequently, if you get LASIK in your mid-thirties, you may need reading glasses in 5-7 years anyway.

Why Would I Need a LASIK touch up?

A LASIK touch up, also known as an enhancement, is commonly done for patients who experience vision deterioration after surgery. Other than vision deterioration, a touch up may be done for surface ablation issues or epithelial ingrowth concerns.

The percentage of necessary touch-ups has shrunk as LASIK technology has been refined. However, 1-2 percent of patients will need an enhancement within the first year, and 10 percent may need an enhancement within the first decade.

Patients with pre-existing refraction issues and other eye conditions should discuss their LASIK prospects with Marano Eye Care prior to surgery.

Dangers of a LASIK Enhancement

LASIK surgery works by reshaping the cornea to the specific pattern needed for the patient. With a LASIK enhancement, the cornea is being subjected to the same treatment. However, since the cornea has already been remodeled, there is less corneal tissue to work with each time surgery is performed. Eventually, LASIK enhancements are no longer an option for patients.

When an unsatisfactory LASIK enhancement is performed, complications may include vision disturbances such as halos, temporary discomfort, irregular astigmatism, diffuse lamellar keratitis and keratectasia.

Ask an Ophthalmologist about LASIK Surgery

As with any surgery, there are risks involved with having LASIK surgery. Any doctor that tells you different is lying to you. The good news is that if you do not have any pre-existing risk factors, LASIK complications are rare. If you are interested in LASIK corrective eye surgery in New Jersey, please contact Marano Eye Care today to schedule a consultation and complete eye exam. The path to better vision is clear!

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