Laser vision correction is an outpatient procedure that uses a cool laser beam to gently reshape the surface of the eye, correcting or greatly improving vision.
Laser vision correction allows nearsighted, farsighted, and astigmatic people to end or greatly reduce their dependence on eye glasses and contact lenses.
LASIK, which stands for laser-assisted in-situ keratomileusis, is a procedure that creates a flap on the cornea and treats the inner tissue of the eye with a laser beam to correct your vision.
Custom Vision Correction uses a treatment pattern that is highly customized to the imperfections and contours of your own cornea. As a result, it gives you a better chance than ever before to obtain 20/20 vision or even better. Custom Vision Correction was approved by the FDA in mid-2003.
IntraLase-initiated LASIK uses the IntraLase Femtosecond laser to complete the first step of the LASIK procedure. It is the first advancement to make LASIK an all-laser procedure.
Noted for improving the safety and predictably of LASIK by replacing the hand-held oscillating microkeratome blade historically used in the first step, the IntraLase laser has also been proven to provide for better than 20/20 visual outcomes, even among Custom/Wavefront patients. Today, the IntraLase laser is the technology of choice among the nation’s leading LASIK surgeons and ophthalmic teaching institutions.
When laser vision correction was performed without the corneal flap, as in PRK (photorefractive keratotomy), patients experienced considerable discomfort and a delay in visual acuity. In LASIK, the surgeon first creates a micro-thin flap of corneal tissue and folds it back to prepare the eye for the second step, where an excimer laser is used on the inner cornea to correct vision. This two-step process allows for rapid visual recovery with little or no patient discomfort, and is credited with the popularity and growth of the procedure worldwide.
New science reveals that the corneal flap has been widely underestimated for its affect on the visual outcome of LASIK. If the corneal surface is left with microscopic high and low spots, the precision of the excimer tissue ablation (step two) can be compromised. Eliminating even minute inaccuracies on the corneal surface improves the visual outcome of the procedure.
Surgeons have found statistically and clinically significant differences in the vision patients achieve when the IntraLase laser is used for corneal flap creation. The IntraLase laser goes beyond simply creating a safer, planar flap to preparing an optimal corneal architecture below the flap, providing for superior visual outcomes, even among Custom/Wavefront patients.
The result: fewer complications and better vision.
No. Custom LASIK generally refers to individualized visual diagnosis with technology called “wavefront,” which allows for customized, personalized treatment with the excimer laser. However, many LASIK surgeons combine Custom treatments and IntraLase. In fact, new data reveals that the IntraLase laser helps Custom LASIK deliver on its promise of better visual outcomes beyond 20/20 to 20/15 and 20/12.5.
No. While traditional LASIK is a successful and relatively safe procedure, the IntraLase laser makes it even safer by virtually eliminating the severe, sight-threatening complications of the microkeratome. IntraLase-initiated LASIK is not only 100 times more accurate, but it also provides patients with superior visual outcomes. These facts give thousands of patients each month the confidence to proceed with laser vision correction.
Clinical studies confirm that patients achieve better vision with IntraLase-initiated LASIK. Data shows:
- More patients achieve 20/20 or better vision with IntraLase-initiated LASIK.
- Patients stating a preference preferred the post-operative vision of their IntraLase-treated eye 3-to-1 over their blade-treated eye.
- IntraLase creates fewer high- and low-order aberrations, associated with night glare and halos.
- IntraLase patients have a reduced incidence of post-operative dry eye symptoms.
- IntraLase patients required fewer enhancement procedures following LASIK.
- The precision of the IntraLase flap significantly reduces the incidence of post-operative induced astigmatism as compared to a microkeratome-created flap.
No. IntraLase-initiated LASIK improves the safety, precision and visual results of LASIK, whether you choose a standard or custom procedure.
The technology for the correction of nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism is designed to be permanent. In a very small number of cases, there may be recurrence. This can be corrected through an enhancement procedure which is included in the price for a limited time following your procedure.
The incidence of complications and side effects is rare. However, as is the case with any clinical procedure, results cannot be guaranteed. A very small number of patients may still need corrective lenses after the procedure.
There are risks associated with any clinical procedure. However, because the laser uses a cool beam of light that is computer controlled, the results are accurate and predictable.
Over 15 million people worldwide have successfully undergone laser vision correction with excellent results. The US FDA has approved laser vision correction technology for nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. The technology is safer and far more effective than it has ever been.
The procedure itself is painless. Patients may experience a slight pressure sensation during the procedure. Some patients may experience discomfort for a day or two following the procedure.
With the latest iLASIK technology, most patients obtain 20/20 vision and nearly all patients obtain 20/40 vision. In some cases, it is possible to attain even better than 20/20 vision.
An optometrist or ophthalmologist will conduct a comprehensive eye exam to determine your candidacy. Other diagnostic tests including corneal topography would also be conducted to ensure good results.
The actual laser treatment takes less than one minute and the entire procedure for both eyes may last 15 to 20 minutes. Your visit should be complete in about an hour.
You will relax in a reclining chair and anesthetic drops will be placed in your eye. Then, your LASIK surgeon will position your head under the laser and a retainer will be placed to hold your eyelids open during treatment. The laser procedure will last about a minute once the flap has been created. Following the procedure, you will rest in a chair for a few minutes and the doctor will examine you prior to you going home.
Patients generally return to work within one to two days following the procedure.
Nearsighted, farsighted and astigmatic people over the age of 18 with a stable prescription, among other criteria, generally qualify for LASIK or laser vision correction. A Northeastern Eye Institute eye doctor can examine your eyes to determine your eligibility.
On rare occasions, some patients have reported transient light sensitivity (photophobia) following IntraLase-initiated LASIK due to a temporary inflammatory response. These side effects, while a nuisance, do not affect visual acuity and can be resolved with steroid eye drops.
Maybe. Contrary to popular belief, LASIK is not an “all-laser” procedure, due to the use of the microkeratome blade. The IntraLase laser is the only laser technology available today for use in the first step of the LASIK procedure and only LASIK procedures that use the IntraLase laser can be considered “all-laser.”
Your doctor can explain the difference between other procedures that may be advertised as “all laser,” such as LASEK, PRK or epi-LASIK – all of which are surface ablation procedures. Because they are performed without creating a corneal flap, these procedures generally require longer healing time and frequently involve more discomfort and a delay in visual recovery.
Slightly - but it’s worth it. Most patients agree that the added level of safety and better vision offered by IntraLase is worth the incremental cost. IntraLase surgeons are leaders in the field of ophthalmology and continually evaluate advances in technology. They’ve determined that the IntraLase is the most sophisticated and accurate system available today for flap creation, and have invested in this technology to sustain their superiority in patient care.
Laser vision correction at Northeastern Eye Institute is very affordable. The price depends upon the procedure that your surgeon at Northeastern Eye Institute recommends. The price can vary between $1,500 and $2,000 per eye. You can also take advantage of long-term patient financing or 0% financing. You will be provided further information about these financing options during your consultation. Financing is subject to credit approval.
You may either attend a FREE seminar, including viewing a live LASIK procedure, or make an appointment for a one-on-one consultation with an eye specialist at Northeastern Eye Institute. Call toll-free (800) 844-6315 or contact NEI by email for more information or to schedule a consultation.