LASER VISION CORRECTION SURGERY
Dr LaHood is one of only a handful of ophthalmologists who have completed subspecialty fellowship training specifically in laser vision correction surgery. This means that he has a deep understanding of how to treat your eyes using the latest laser technology. He provides a personalised approach because when it comes to your eyes and laser surgery, we are aiming for perfection and it is all about planning and precision. Below you will be able to read about some frequently asked questions as well as a brief outline of the main types of laser treatment available. As always, just get in touch if you would like to come in and discuss any of this.
Frequently Asked Questions Laser Vision Correction Surgery
Can you only treat shortsightedness?
No, we are able to treat a range of refractive errors including shortsightedness, longsightedness, astigmatism and presbyopia (when you lose the ability to see up close with age). It is important that you have your eyes assessed and a prescription of your glasses checked as whether your refractive error can be treated depends on the shape of your eye as well as the strength of your prescription. Modern laser technology allows treatment of a wider variety of prescriptions so even if you have been disappointed previously about not being able to have laser, it is worth checking if you could now.
Does laser treatment wear off with time?
No. We expect a little change in the first month after your procedure but we factor this in to your treatment. Your eyes do still go through normal age changes of presbyopia in your 40s and 50s where you lose your ability to see up close and again in your 70s and 80s as you develop cataract. These changes can lead people to believe that their laser has worn off but they are simply age changes.
Do I need to hold extremely still?
A lot of people worry about this. What if I blink or what if I look away? Scary movies have not helped this myth! However do not worry. The laser tracks your eye many thousands of time per second and if there is any significant movement it is possible to stop and restart the treatment from the same spot without worry. So a still patient is helpful but you do not have to be like a stone.
Is LASIK, SMILE or PRK better?
Each different laser procedure has pros and cons. A lot of people will come in with no knowledge of any procedures while others have made up their mind what they would prefer already. It is important that I measure your eyes and talk to you about your lifestyle and visual demands so that we get the right treatment for you. The newest treatment is not always the best and so we will take our time to make sure you have found an option that will give you the best outcome long term.
Am I too young for laser surgery
The key thing here is that your glasses prescription is stable. For some people this occurs early in life and they may be able to have laser treatment done at age 18. For others, they are still changing in their early twenties. It is not that it is dangerous to do laser treatment on a changing prescription but that if we are aiming for a moving target then in a few years, you may be disappointed that your vision is not as crisp as it was straight after treatment due to the change. I would like your prescription to be stable for 6 months and even longer for younger patients. Again, this is something that we can discuss and bringing in your current prescription can be very helpful to compare to what we measure in clinic.
Your Laser Options
Laser reshaping occurs beneath a thin flap in the cornea. This allows excellent vision from day one. This technique has been around a long time and is very precise. Excellent for all refractive errors. Downsides include dry eye for a period afterwards and the rare potential for flap problems with contact sports.
The newest of the laser techniques. A small lenticule of corneal tissue is removed without a flap. This causes less dry eye. Currently used for treating shortsightedness only but expect this to change in the near future. Vision is very good at day one also.
The surface of the cornea is reshaped without anything touching the eye. As there is more healing to occur, vision is not at its best until two weeks after laser. An excellent technique for treating irregular shaped corneas as well as shortsightedness and astigmatism.