Laser Eye Surgery not right for you?

If you have ever wished to be free from the constraints of glasses or contact lenses, then some form of laser eye surgery may be suitable for you. It is important that you understand the procedure, the recovery period and anything that can go wrong, to ensure you are fully prepared for the treatment. Unfortunately some people are unsuitable for laser eye treatment due to a number of reasons, these include:

  • Unstable prescriptions – If you have had to change the strength of your glasses in the past two years, laser eye surgery may not be suitable for you, until your prescription becomes stable. This problem is more likely in under 20’s, pregnant women and people on certain medications.
  • Certain professions – some jobs will not allow you to have laser eye surgery as it may harm your ability to see effectively.
  • Price – the cost of laser eye surgery can exclude you from being able to have the treatment. It can be very expensive and is not covered on either the NHS or health insurance policies.
  • You are worried about the side effects. If you are worried about the possible negative side effects of the treatment, then having the operation may not be suitable for you.
  • You have an auto-immune condition. Some diseases can prevent you from healing as well as possible. In these circumstances your vision can be seriously affected and prevent you from getting the results you deserve.
  • You play certain sports. Some sports such as boxing and rugby are not advocated for patients who have had laser eye surgery. Not only can the flap be dislodged, but blows to the eye can lead to a condition called sympathetic ophthalmia, which can lead to vision loss in the affected eye.
  • You have a serious eye condition. Conditions such as glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy are reasons for not having the specified treatment.
  • You are under the age of 18. Currently laser eye surgery is not available for anyone under the age of 18 for a number of reasons. These include unstable prescriptions and ophthalmic immaturity. 

Some conditions can lead to problems with the procedure, however if the ophthalmologist knows in advance they can plan more suitable treatments. These include keratoconus, previous eye surgery or injury and some types of eye disease.

Finally your ophthalmologist will be able to inform you of previous conditions that can adversely affect the outcome of the laser eye surgery. These include things such as large pupils, thin corneas and previous eye surgery such as LASEK.

Tuesday 1st September 2009

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