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My mother had a nearsightedness correction 20 years ago and she says it was painful. Is it any better now?
A trail of negative speculations on vision correction has been there since the time when the only surgery was radial keratotomy. That procedure core was that special notches of up to 30% thickness were cut using a diamond knife on the cornea from pupil to periphery, and those cuts were adhering consequently, resulting in corneal surface change thus altering its refractive properties and improving vision. This was the great advantage. However there were a few drawbacks as well: the tools were far form micrometer accuracy so outcomes were pretty difficult to calculate and ensure. Healing of notches was not so fast and subject to individual regenerative abilities, often causing complications as well. Rehabilitation was slow and enforced a few limitations.
Excimer Laser introduction in ophthalmic surgery was a real breakthrough. Modern Laser vision correction surgery is performed as follows: a corneal flap of 90 to 130 micrometers thick is created and folded aside giving access to inner corneal layers; then the laser evaporates some corneal tissue, the flap is placed back and is self-fixed thanks to own collagen. There is no need for suturing as epithelium is restored along the flap border by itself. Patients start enjoy good vision already 1,5 to 2 hours after the correction.
Procedures keep advancing and the newest FemtoLASIK technique eliminates any mechanical contact. It is also known as «all–laser LASIK», since it is delivered assisted by two lasers: the Femtosecond laser creates corneal flap and Excimer laser corrects corneal shape. Thanks to the procedure being non-contact recovery is very fast with practically no unpleasant sensations possible.
Starting what age one can go for a laser correction?
The optimal age for Laser assisted eyesight correction is between 18 and 45. The correction is not recommended before 18 as the organism still grows till the age and this is true for the eye ball and consequently, refraction as well. After 45 doctors have to warn patients that laser correction cannot stop or prevent age related farsightedness (presbyopia).
Why earlier cataract was treated only when matured?
Recently intracapsular cataract extraction has been the only cataract treatment procedure. The procedure demanded crystalline lens extraction as a whole, therefore the lens had to be dens to be successfully removed altogether, so the cataract had to be mature. Moreover it would be extremely difficult to extract crystalline lenses at early cataract stages without assistance of modern microscopes as the lens is still rather transparent. Therefore patients had to live with dropping eyesight, sometimes up to almost a complete vision loss to wait for the necessary cataract maturity.
This was dangerous as well as progressing cataract may cause secondary glaucoma. This disease is very dangerous as it increases intra-ocular pressure possibly causing optic nerve atrophy and endangering vision ability ever.
Modern cataract surgery can manage the disease at any stage, so the treatment may be delivered imeately after the diagnosis is set.