LASIK technique appeared in 1989. It is currently the most popular all over the world. Medical centres and clinics in 45 countries use LASIK technique in their practice. Within the last ten years more than 15 million corrections have been made worldwide.
LASIK is a combination of microsurgery and excimer-laser technology. A special microkeratome device is used which first creates a corneal tissue flap that is folded aside and then laser exposure is performed on the cornea inner layers. After the laser correction vision improves due to the fact that the laser creates a new shape of the cornea which is the natural lens of a human eye. As a result the cornea starts refracting light rays in a different way and they focus correctly on the retina and the image becomes clear.
In contrast to PRK (photorefractive keratotomy) technique, LASIK does not affect the upper corneal layers during the excimer-laser correction, and the optically distorted areas are evaporated by the laser beam from the middle layers of corneal tissue. As a result, the corneal shape receives optical features individual for each patient. It allows avoiding postoperative corneal opacity, as well as a painful rehabilitation period. Vision is restored within the shortest time possible.
Scope of application of LASIK technique.
myopia up to -15.0 D
(Depending on the individual features of a patient’s eye)
- hyperopia +6.0D
- astigmatism ± 3.0D.
Stages of LASIK procedure
- Anesthetic drops are administered into a patient’s eye (general anesthesia or anesthetic injections are not applied). After the anesthetic takes effect, a blepharoplast is applied. The latter prevents involuntary blinking of eyelids.
- The patient is asked to look at a flashing spot in the device to adjust the eye in the central position.
- A corneal tissue flap of 130-150 micrometers in thickness is created from surface layers by a special microkeratome device, and then it is folded aside opening deeper cornea layers for the laser beam.
- The beam evaporates some part of the cornea, shaping its new surface.
- The flap returns back to its place and is fixed by the natural corneal substance, which is collagen.
- No suturing is required. Epithelium along the flap edge heals independently.
- After the laser correction is completed cornea is bathed in a special solution. Anti-inflammatory drops are instilled in the patient's eye.
- Then the second eye is corrected using the same technique.
The surgery demonstration
Rehabilitation period after LASIK procedure
is really minimal: the patient’s clear vision is restored already in 1-2 hours after the correction, however insignificant vision fluctuations can last for some time. Such fluctuations do not violate the normal life style. The patient returns quickly to the daily routine. Vision is recovered completely within 3-5 days, depending on the specific features of the patient’s eye. Doctors warn patients on possible sense of discomfort after the laser correction, but in most cases it will be just insignificant.
Advantages of LASIK procedure
- You are able to return to your daily duties and start leading normal lifestyle already the next day after the correction.
- Upper corneal layers will not be affected. The corneal tissue is evaporated from the middle layers.
- LASIK procedure is outpatient. It does not require admission to hospital and is performed in a one-day mode.
- LASIK procedure implies the use of local eye drop anesthesia which is easily tolerated by patients.
- It is possible to correct both eyes at a time.
- Laser correction has a wide scope of application.
- The shortest recovery period: clear vision is restored in just few hours after the correction.
- High efficiency: laser correction is a painless procedure which allows restoring clear vision with minimal risk of side-effects and with a shortest recovery period.
- A painless postoperative period.
- Upper corneal layers do not get damaged in the course of treatment.
- No postoperative corneal clouding.
- During a long-term observation of patients no visual impairment as a result of laser action was revealed.
- High level of LASIK fail-safety and advanced last generation laser equipment make this procedure easy and accessible.
Doctors recommend to take special care of their eyes right after the LASIK procedure to avoid the flap shifting!
Corneal thickness is the main limitation for application of LASIK technique. If LASIK is impossible for a patient according to medical indications then the patient can be offered other laser correction methods, for example, LASEK or EPI-LASIK.