Am I A Good Candidate For LASIK Eye Surgery?

Am I A Good Candidate For LASIK Eye Surgery?

Laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis (Lasik) eye surgery changes the shape of the eye to correct vision without the need for eyeglasses or contacts. This surgery can be used to treat myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), astigmatism, presbyopia, and cataracts. Lasik reshapes the cornea so that light can travel properly through the eye and hit the correct spot on the retina to produce clear vision. As with any surgery, before a person can schedule a Lasik procedure, they will need to be examined and referred. This surgery is fast and easy without much recovery time, and many people are good candidates, although some conditions will disqualify a person from eligibility, either permanently or temporarily.


Determining Factors For Candidacy

If you have any of the following conditions, your optometrist may not refer you for Lasik, or they will instruct you to wait until your eye health has improved or become more stable.

Eye Health. There are several eye health conditions that can disqualify you either temporarily or permanently from Lasik. For example, untreated dry eye syndrome can impede the healing process after Lasik or the surgery may cause worsening dry eye symptoms. Other chronic eye diseases such as keratoconus, which affects the structure of the cornea, or glaucoma, which is usually associated with high intraocular pressure, may also disqualify you from Lasik, as the procedure may exacerbate symptoms or worsen vision.

Age. While there is no age limits to qualify for Lasik, there are some age guidelines. Typically eyes keep growing until approximately age 20, after a common growth spurt during the teenage years. Because of this, those under 20 may be temporarily denied Lasik until the eyes are confirmed to no longer be growing. And your eyeglasses prescription should remain stable or unchanged for at least 12 months.

Corneal Thickness. When you receive Lasik, an incision will be made just before the corneal flap. If the cornea is not thick enough to properly heal, it can impair your vision and cause complications after the surgery. To know if your cornea is thick enough for Lasik, you will have to have a corneal pachymetry test, which is essentially an ultrasound of your eye.

Pregnancy. Because pregnancy is a time when hormones are rapidly fluctuating within the body, this can result in slight alterations to the eye. Because the thickness and curvature of the cornea can change while pregnant and then change back after giving birth, the vision correction may end up being inaccurate. While Lasik cannot be performed on those who are pregnant so your optometrist will discuss with you a plan and timeframe for when to have the surgery post-pregnancy instead.

Unmanaged Diabetes. When diabetes is managed, Lasik can be performed. But when diabetes is not managed and blood sugar levels fluctuate, it can cause changes in the eye that automatically disqualify you from receiving Lasik. High blood sugar levels can also slow the rate of healing, making those with high blood pressure more susceptible to infection and corneal damage.

Calgary Lasik Assessment At Specs In The City

If you are considering Lasik, have an eye exam at Specs in the City in Calgary to determine if you are a good candidate. The professional optometrists at Specs in the City Optometry will guide you through the process for the Lasik procedure including candidacy assessment and referral, and discuss the risks, recovery time, and additional benefits that you can expect. If it is determined that you do not fit the criteria of an ideal candidate for Lasik eye surgery, our experienced optometrists will work with you to find an alternative course of treatment so your vision can be as clear and comfortable as possible. To book an eye exam at Specs in the City, call 1-403-252-2020 or fill out the online contact form.


Q: How long is the recovery period for Lasik?
A: While you may see immediate improvement to your vision in less than 24 hours, your eyes will not fully recover for at least a week or two.

Q: Can Lasik cause blindness?
A: Blindness would be an extremely unlikely outcome. No blindness has been recorded in North America since surgeons began practicing Lasik in 2001.

Q: Will Lasik cure my vision impairment?
A: For those with refractive errors, Lasik is a great option to correct your vision and negate the need for corrective lenses. People with very strong prescriptions may not be able to get Lasik, as the prescription needs to be within the treatable range. If you have a strong prescription and have thought about getting Lasik, consult with your Calgary optometrist.

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