There are a few different types of vision corrective surgeries available to patients who wish to improve eyesight without the need for eyeglasses or contact lenses. If you have problems with your near vision, for example, your eye surgeon might recommend monovision laser eye surgery. Keep reading to learn more about this revolutionary technique and contact an eye surgeon to decide if it might be right for you.
Who Can Benefit
One common type of refractive error is called presbyopia. This occurs in all adults, typically beginning in their 40s. Presbyopia interferes with your eyes’ ability to focus on objects that are close to your face. As you age, the condition will gradually become worse. If you notice that you hold books and other reading materials farther away from your face, it could be time to start thinking about treatments for presbyopia. Presbyopia is often treated with reading glasses. Unfortunately, reading glasses can become a nuisance. If you would prefer to free yourself of the need for glasses, then monovision laser eye surgery could be right for you.
How It Works
Monovision refers to the use of one eye for distance seeing and the other eye for close-up work. Although this might seem unusual, it’s a commonly used technique that your eyes will be able to readily adjust to. Previously, monovision was accomplished with the use of different lenses in eyewear. However, LASIK surgeons are now able to apply the same laser vision correction techniques to accomplish monovision without the need for lenses. Your LASIK surgeon can shape the cornea of your dominant eye for distance vision and your non-dominant eye for close up work. Typically, a LASIK surgery takes about 15 minutes per eye.
What to Expect Afterward
The post-operative care guidelines for monovision laser eye surgery are the same as for any other LASIK surgery. Your eye surgeon will likely apply antibiotic eye drops and an eye shield to protect your eyes as they heal. You should arrange to have someone else drive you home.
The development of LASIK technology for vision correction was groundbreaking. However, in recent years researchers have made further advances in the field to offer patients even better vision correction. One such technological advancement is called wavefront guided technology, also referred to as custom LASIK. If you are curious about having eye surgery to eliminate your need for corrective lenses, talk to an eye surgeon about the benefits of wavefront guided technology.
One of the key differences between LASIK with wavefront guided technology and conventional LASIK eye surgery is three-dimensional mapping. With the new technology, your eye surgeon can measure the whole eye with a laser to create a three-dimensional map. The map reflects an incredible 200 different points of measurement. This highly detailed map is then used to customize your treatment. The entire scanning procedure takes less than one minute; furthermore, you won’t feel anything during the process.
Eye surgeons often recommend the new wavefront guided technology because it offers a high degree of precision. In fact, patients are often able to achieve better than 20/20 vision. The results of the LASIK eye surgery are permanent; you’ll achieve freedom from your corrective eyewear.
Although conventional LASIK surgery is also able to achieve drastic improvements in visual acuity, wavefront guided technology offers the added benefit of correcting higher-order aberrations. Higher-order aberrations refer to irregularities in your eyesight aside from refractive errors, such as myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. In other words, wavefront guided technology can improve how well you see by improving your contrast sensitivity and fine vision. You’ll be able to enjoy better night vision and a reduction in halos around lights. You’ll also notice that glare from bright lights or reflected sunlight is greatly improved. Furthermore, if you have previously had LASIK surgery and later experienced issues with glare and night vision, your eye surgeon can use wavefront guided technology to correct these problems.
Laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) is among the most popular types of vision correction surgeries. It has been successfully used by eye surgeons for years to treat patients who suffer from refractive errors that interfere with their vision. For example, LASIK surgery could help you if you have myopia, hyperopia, or astigmatism. However, each patient is different and only your eye surgeon can help you decide if LASIK surgery is right for you. Consider the following factors and consult an eye surgeon before making your decision.
Deciding to Gain Freedom from Eyewear
Patients often decide that it’s time to consider having LASIK surgery because they are growing weary of relying on eyeglasses or contact lenses in order to see well. With contact lenses, there is always the possibility that you will contract an eye infection or that you will lose your contacts. If you wear eyeglasses rather than contact lenses, you’ve probably lost your eyewear at least once or twice. When you choose LASIK surgery, you’ll be regaining your independence. You’ll be able to travel without worrying about taking spare lenses or eyeglasses with you.
Realizing You Are Developing Presbyopia
Presbyopia is an inevitable part of aging. If you are in your 40s or older, you already likely have some degree of presbyopia. This condition is characterized by increasing difficulty seeing objects close to your face. People with presbyopia typically have trouble working at computers, for example. If you have presbyopia, it may be time to talk to an eye surgeon about having monovision LASIK surgery. This technique adjusts your eyes so that you won’t need to use reading glasses.
Determining If You Are a Good Candidate
Before you can make the final decision about whether to have LASIK eye surgery, you’ll need to consult an eye surgeon to determine if you’re a good candidate. Review your complete medical history, discuss your goals for the surgery, and discuss what you can expect from the procedure. Your surgeon may inform you that you are a good candidate for the procedure if you are at least 18 years old, with stable vision and healthy corneas.
Patients with significantly reduced mobility, such as those with quadriplegia, struggle to perform simple, day-to-day tasks. They may be unable to adjust their glasses, for example, potentially causing discomfort and embarrassment. Patients with quadriplegia are also unable to clean their eyeglasses when they become cloudy or swap out their regular eyeglasses for reading glasses. Fortunately, vision correction procedures can give these special care patients a degree of freedom. By eliminating their dependence on eyewear, these patients regain a measure of independence.
Patients with quadriplegia can contact Focus on Independence, a national organization that provides vision correction surgeries, such as LASIK surgery, free of charge. Eligibility for the program is reserved for patients who can no longer use their hands or arms to manipulate eyewear. Although vision correction cannot restore mobility, it can certainly make a big difference in the lives of quadriplegic patients. This eye surgery program was established by eye surgeons Dr. Maloney and Dr. Durrie.
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