LASIK – An Overview

August 24, 2020

So you’re considering getting Laser assisted in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) but perhaps don’t know where to start? There are many reasons why millions of people have opted for LASIK surgery, including the wide range of vision issues it can help address. Among the reasons why patients at Anh Nguyen Ophthalmology choose LASIK is to address nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), astigmatism, and aging eye (presbyopia).1

The History of Lasik

LASIK is a common procedure today but the technology for it was first created about 30 years ago and the US patent for (LASIK) was granted to Gholam A. Peyman, MD in 1989. Despite this, the LASIK procedure as we know it was not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) until 1999. Since then over 28 million procedures have been done world-wide.2 The sheer number of times LASIK has been used is a sign of both the success, reproducibility, and safety of the procedure that uses LASER technology to restore a higher standard of vision.

Is LASIK Dangerous?

LASIK is one of the most effective, rigorously tested, and safest options for those who want to improve their vision without the use of glasses or contacts. The first step when considering LASIK is to complete an in depth consultation to determine if you are a good candidate for the procedure. Anh Nguyen Ophthalmology provides a personalized approach to every LASIK consultation, ensuring that all potential candidates are thoroughly educated on the procedure and the recovery process. No matter how effective you believe LASIK will be for you, it’s helpful to have a good understanding of the procedure before your first appointment.

The Safety of LASIK

Over the course of the first decade of use in the US, the FDA spent a large amount of time completing clinical trials designed to test the safety and effectiveness of LASIK eye surgery. Between 1993 and 2005, the FDA studied the effects and results of more than 9,000 patients in its clinical trials to ensure the effectiveness and safety of LASIK.3

To this day, there have been more than 7,000 peer-reviewed studies to assess the safety and effectiveness of LASIK with little concern raised about its continued use.In addition to testing the procedure itself, clinical trials also emphasized testing on what specifically makes a good or bad candidate for LASIK as well as testings for different techniques and technologies can reduce any side-effects. Side effects for LASIK may include dry eye, glares, and halos.3

Trusting the Procedure

There are several reasons why LASIK surgery is trustworthy and safe. The first reason is the amount of rigorous clinical testing that the procedure has undergone since its approval by the FDA in 1999.

The second reason for this is the in-depth consultation which includes multiple examinations of the eye(s) to ensure the patient is a good candidate for LASER eye surgery. After establishing a patient is a good candidate, the doctor will produce a high-definition map of their eye that is used to guide the LASER equipment during the procedure.

The third is the technology; Laser Radar (LADAR) is the laser used in LASIK surgery which is of the highest quality. The software and equipment was developed by NASA for docking the space shuttle. This advanced technology allows the automated system to continuously monitor and track eye movement through the procedure, ensuring precise corneal modifications.4

Like all surgeries, there are a few risks involved in the use of LASIK but the incidents of problems remain extremely low as this form of LASER surgery continues to be used and effective.

Schedule a Consultation

If you’re interested in LASIK and want to know if you are a suitable candidate for the surgery, schedule an appointment with Dr. Nguyen at Anh Nguyen Ophthalmology. Call (703) 534-4393 or request your appointment online.

References:

  1. “Laser Surgery Can Improve Vision Problems.” Content – Health Encyclopedia . University of Rochester Medical Center. https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?ContentTypeID=1.
  2. “A Look at LASIK Past, Present and Future.” American Academy of Ophthalmology, March 28, 2016. https://www.aao.org/eyenet/article/look-at-lasik-past-present-future.
  3. “Clinical Research: The Science Behind LASIK.” American Refractive Surgery Council, July 5, 2017. https://americanrefractivesurgerycouncil.org/clinical-research-science-behind-lasik/.
  4. “The Right Track for Vision Correction.” NASA. NASA. https://spinoff.nasa.gov/spinoff2003/hm_1.html.
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