LASIK Laser eye surgery London

What is LASIK Laser eye surgery?

LASIK eye surgery is the most commonly performed treatment at Vision Correction London. The procedure is suitable for 90% of people with poor eyesight, and has a complication rate of less than 1%. With the advance of modern laser technology, the procedure is now one of the safest available and the most commonly performed elective surgical procedure worldwide.

LASIK laser eye surgery consultation

How Does LASIK Work?

Your eyes see by allowing light to enter through the cornea (the front part of the eye) and focus on the retina. The information is then communicated to the brain via the optic nerve.

Most people with poor eyesight have eyeballs that are either too long or too short in relation to the size of the cornea. Eyeballs which are relatively long mean that images focus in front of the retina, making you short sighted. Eyeballs that are relatively short mean that images focus behind the retina, making you long sighted.

Laser eye surgery reshapes your corneas with precision accuracy so that light will focus directly on your retinas. The result is that you will be able to see clearly without the need for glasses or contact lenses.

Some History

Some History

Laser eye surgery was first approved in 1995, but the procedure has developed considerably since then. The 1995 procedure was called Photorefractive keratectomy or PRK. During PRK, the outer surface of the cornea is removed and the laser works directly on the corneal tissue to change its shape and improve vision. PRK has a longer recovery time and higher risk of infection than other laser eye procedures. Despite this, PRK is still available and in some cases is the most suitable option. LASEK is a variation on PRK.

LASIK has been available since 1999, overcoming the issues associated with earlier forms of laser eye surgery. Using lasers for both the incision under the cornea and the change to its curvature means that it’s easy to control, has predictable results, it’s relatively painless and comes with a very short recovery time.

LASIK laser eye surgery laser equipment

Who is a good candidate for LASIK eye surgery?

LASIK is an appropriate treatment for the majority of people and can be used to correct both long and short sight. In some cases, it is even suitable for people who need glasses for both near and distance vision. You must also have corneas of at least 0.5mm thickness and be in good general health.

A consultation with one of our clinicians will establish whether you are a suitable candidate.

What happens during the LASIK procedure?

The surgery is performed under local anaesthetic eye drops and typically takes around 10 minutes. The equipment used is a Wavelight Allegretto Laser and the Ziemer LDV Femtosecond laser- two of the most advanced lasers on the market.

The surgeon uses a laser to cut a small, circular flap in the outer cornea. This flap is folded away to reveal the bed of the cornea. Then a computer-guided laser removes a pre-set amount of corneal tissue and corrects the shape of your cornea, enabling it to focus light directly on the retina.
The final part of the procedure is replacing the flap, which the eye’s natural processes hold in place.

Laser eye surgery consultation

Before LASIK treatment, you will have a consultation at our clinic. This will establish that the procedure is the best one for you, and ensure that we correct your vision accurately. We do not perform the surgery on the same day as we will give you drops to dilate your pupils during your eye test at the consultation. However, you can have your LASIK treatment less than a week later, subject to availability.

We recommend that you do not drive on the day of the consultation. We will use drops to dilate your pupils so we can test your eyes, and this can make your vision blurry for four to six hours afterwards.

During your consultation, a technician will carry out diagnostic tests on your eyes, taking the most precise measurements and you will have a full eye test with one of our optometrists.

After the tests, you’ll meet your surgeon who will go over the test results with you and discuss treatment to make sure that your care plan is right for you and your needs.

You can then book your surgery appointment. We will give you a consent form for the procedure which you need to bring back with you on your surgery day. We will also give you an information pack to read at home, although you are welcome to get in touch with us directly if you have any questions.

Contact lenses

Please note that you should not wear contact lenses prior to your consultation or surgery. This is so we can take accurate measurements of your eye. We recommend that you abstain from soft lenses for 3 days before your consultation, and this figure increases to 4 weeks for gas permeable rigid lenses. If stopping lens wear before your consultation is not possible, we’ll perform the tests to determine suitability but will then ask that your refrain from wearing them for the required time before your actual surgery. We’ll repeat the tests on the day of surgery and use these test results for the procedure to increase accuracy.

LASIK treatment day and what happens

You will usually have your laser eye surgery anywhere from 5 days to weeks following your consultation, and we will usually treat both your eyes on the same day.

Most people spend between one and one and half hours at the clinic on surgery day, and we recommend that you take two days off work.

When you come to have your eye surgery, remember to bring your consent form. It’s also a good idea to bring sunglasses to wear on the way home, and please don’t wear eye makeup.

Many people bring a friend or family member with them to help them get home afterwards, as your vision is likely to be blurry. You will be able to see within a few minutes of the procedure being completed, but you will need to have your vision checked before you are able to drive. Even if you take a taxi or use public transport, your friend can make sure you pay the correct fare and get home to the right house!

After your LASIK procedure

LASIK recovery is often at the forefront of prospective patients’ minds. At the clinic, you will be given three types of eye drops to use at home: antibiotic drops, lubricating drops and steroid drops. You will also receive clear eye shields to wear at night for the first night after surgery. We will give you full instructions on how to use them, as well as written details for reference. You are also welcome to telephone our admin team if you have any queries.

While LASIK is a routine, low-risk procedure carried out in a single day, it is important to remember that you have undergone surgery and you need to take things easy for a few days afterwards. You can start to do light exercise after about five days, and enjoy your full exercise regime again after two weeks. You also need to wait two weeks before you can go swimming, and you’ll need to wear goggles for swimming until four weeks after your surgery.

You can drive again whenever your vision has cleared and you feel ready. For most people, this takes a day or two.

If you like to wear eye makeup, please wait at least a week after LASIK surgery before you start using it again, particularly mascara and eyeliner.

Life after laser eye surgery

A month after laser eye surgery, you should be able to resume all your usual activities – many, including driving and going to work, you can pick up again in less than a week.

The difference will be that you can exercise, travel, and wake up in the morning while seeing clearly, all without the need for glasses or contact lenses. Life will go back to normal very quickly, but it’ll be a better kind of normal than before.

The procedure, Staff and Consultant exceeded my expectations. To say I was nervous, was an understatement. I had been waiting for many years to attempt the procedure. Mr Mearza was very reassuring, and together with his team, were patient throughout my many questions and the procedure itself. I’m glad I researched and chose a quality surgeon and company. My only regret is not having the procedure sooner. It is very freeing being able to see without relying on glasses and contacts.

Vanessa

LASIK

The procedure, Staff and Consultant exceeded my expectations. To say I was nervous, was an understatement. I had been waiting for many years to attempt the procedure. Mr Mearza was very reassuring, and together with his team, were patient throughout my many questions and the procedure itself. I’m glad I researched and chose a quality surgeon and company. My only regret is not having the procedure sooner. It is very freeing being able to see without relying on glasses and contacts.

Vanessa

LASIK