Does laser eye surgery hurt? What’s the chance of surgery going wrong? We answer frequently asked questions about laser eye surgery and vision correction in general.
Does laser eye surgery hurt?
Laser eye surgery takes under 10 minutes, and doesn’t hurt at all. You may feel some discomfort, but our specialists will place anesthetic eye drops in your eye to reduce or eliminate any pain for PRK patients. Quite a few LASIK patients report little to no pain, and nothing more than mild discomfort lasting up to a day after surgery.
The healing process differs from person to person. Any post-surgical pain should go away within 12 hours, but some patients feel completely fine right after LASIK eye surgery.
PRK different from LASIK in that the procedure exposes more of the cornea. After PRK, surface cells on your eyes will have to grow back over the treated area – taking several weeks. There is a little more discomfort associated with PRK surgery, and longer healing time.
What’s the worst that can happen? Can I go blind?
You will almost certainly not go blind.
The worst complication associated with laser eye surgery is an eye infection (also known as microbial keratitis). The chance of contracting an eye infection from eye surgery is at least 4 times lower than receiving one from wearing daily contact lenses, or 20 times lower if you’re using continual wear contacts.
In fact, many people choose to receive laser eye surgery to reduce the chance of receiving an eye infection from contacts.
Is LASIK or PRK right for me?
Various factors come into play when choosing the right type of eye surgery. These are based on your lifestyle, eye structure and demographic. The two most common options for eye surgery include LASIK and PRK.
LASIK and PRK both use an excimer laser to reshape your cornea, helping you achieve the best vision possible, often 20/20 or better. However, patient with higher prescriptions may not be suited for LASIK, whereas PRK can be used for all patients. LASIK has faster visual recovery than PRK, but by one month after the procedure, both procedures have comparable visual outcomes.
We recommend that you schedule a free eye consultation so that we may run some tests and present the best options to you, based on your eyes, lifestyle and demographic. Some other frequently asked questions include:
When can I go back to work?
After LASIK surgery, you may return to work the next day. For our PRK patients, we recommend two to three days of rest and recommended one week off work.
When can I start driving again?
You may begin driving as soon as your vision is stable, excluding the day in which you received surgery.
When can I wear makeup again?
You may begin wearing makeup roughly one week after surgery, provided that you replace your old makeup with new products to reduce the risk of infection.
What are the side effects of laser eye surgery?
Some people will experience dry eyes after surgery, which can be relieved with eye drops and typically disappear over time. Others may experience halos around light sources, typically during the nighttime, but this will lessen over time as well.
What is the chance of eye surgery going wrong?
Eye surgery has been available for more than 25 years, and is one of the most successful and safest surgical procedures available. There is approximately a one percent chance of anything going wrong, and most complications are resolved through clinical management.
Do you have any more questions about laser eye surgery?