The Truth About LASIK
With so much information – and misinformation – about LASIK out there, it’s no wonder that many people are confused. What does LASIK do? What are its possible side effects? If LASIK is performed with a laser, how important is your surgeon?
Dr. Stephen Updegraff is committed to dispelling LASIK’s myths, and helping patients separate fact from fiction. These are just a few of the common myths about LASIK, along with the truth regarding each of them.
Myth: LASIK isn’t “real” surgery.
Truth: LASIK most definitely is surgery. And in order to achieve the best possible outcome, patients undergoing LASIK must view the procedure with the same respect as they have for any other surgery. While LASIK isn’t dangerous when performed on a good candidate by a skilled, experienced surgeon such as Dr. Updegraff, some risks do exist, just as they do for all surgeries.
Myth: LASIK complications are common after laser vision correction.
Truth: A multitude of clinical studies and reports show that the risks for LASIK are very low. Dr. Updegraff performs extensive diagnostic testing prior to LASIK to rule out high-risk individuals who are more prone to developing long-term complications from the procedure. In addition, most potential complications can be treated and resolved in their early stages. Simple side effects, such as temporary dry eye or night glare, resolve without further treatment after several weeks or months.
Myth: After LASIK, you won’t need to wear glasses or contacts ever again.
Truth: Each patient is an individual and experiences unique results from LASIK. Many of Dr. Updegraff’s patients achieve 20/20 or better vision, and end their dependence on corrective eyewear. Others find reading glasses are still needed. Additionally, as we age, naturally occurring conditions such as presbyopia can somewhat impair vision, even for those have previously undergone LASIK.
Myth: It doesn’t matter who performs your procedure, since the laser does all the work.
Truth: While the laser is a truly innovative tool that’s essential to the LASIK procedure, it’s still just a tool – only as good as the surgeon using it. The surgeon’s degree of skill is absolutely essential in giving you the safest and best possible outcome. In addition, the best LASIK surgeons rigorously screen potential patients to avoid performing the procedure on someone who is a poor candidate for it. Post-operative patient care is also essential in providing the best possible outcome.
Myth: LASIK is so new that long-term complications aren’t really known.
Truth: Dr. Updegraff has been performing LASIK for more than 15 years, longer than most other surgeons anywhere in the world. Laser vision correction technology was first developed in the 1980s and became widely available in the United States in the mid-1990s. In fact, the first LASIK procedure was performed in the United States in 1987. This means that we have been able to study patients who had LASIK nearly 25 years ago, and determine that there are no significant long-term risks from it.
If you have any additional questions about LASIK, please feel free to contact Dr. Updegraff and the staff of Updegraff Vision at 727-551-2020, or visit our website at www.lasikbyupdegraff.com.