LASIK Side Effects
The increasing number of people who opt for LASIK speaks volumes as to how safe LASIK eye surgeries are.
Serious complications are only found in less than 1% of patients who have undergone LASIK surgery, according to experienced LASIK surgeons in a report by AllAboutVision.com. Most reported having clearer and better vision for a very long time, with no complications at all.
Though complications are rare, certain side effects do exist for some people.
Do note that these risks can be significantly reduced when you opt for a reputable and seasoned eye surgeon.
Common LASIK Side Effects
After LASIK, some patients might experience temporary dryness of eyes or hazy vision. This happens because the cornea nerves that run from the edges of the cornea towards the surface are severed off during the flap creation process. This leads to a decrease in tear production that results in insufficient moisture to the eyes. Doctors will sometimes say that their method in creating the flap will keep the amount of nerves being severed at a minimum, but it is impossible to quantify cornea nerves pre and post operation. Dry eye syndrome after LASIK surgery is temporary but in some cases can last up to six months. It, however, can be easily treated with lubricating eye drops.
By cutting the cornea, the strength of the entire cornea’s architecture is actually weakened. This can cause the cornea to get out of shape. Once the cornea is in an abnormal shape, a patient’s vision becomes blurry and distorted. In many cases, penetrating keratoplasty is eventually performed to manage this complication. The exact condition is called keratectasia. The incidence of keratectasia after LASIK has been estimated to be 0.04% to 0.6%.
Not every patient will achieve 20/20 vision through LASIK surgery. This happens when too much or too little corneal tissue is removed. This may also be due to your eyes not responding to the surgery or healing in a predictable manner.
In the event of overcorrection or undercorrection, enhancement may need to be carried out.
There’s also the rare occurrence of not achieving the desired result. This usually happens amongst those with significant refractive issues. They, unfortunately, may still have to rely on spectacles or contact lenses after LASIK surgery.
Lasik surgery requires the creation of a flap, either by blade or by laser. Many things can happen to this flap that can potentially cause irreversible poor vision, including:
- Incomplete cutting of the flap with the blade method or being unable to lift the flap after laser separation with the femtosecond laser method. Surgery must be aborted.
- Flap dislodgment / displacement many hours or many days after surgery. Patients must return to the clinic ASAP to reposition the flap.
- Flap striaes or folds that can occur if the flap disturbed, or is not placed back correctly or smoothly. This leads to microscopic wrinkles in the flap that affect the patient’s vision.
- Gas bubbles formation below the cornea that can hinder and delay surgery.
- Inflammation and/or infection between the flap and the cornea.
Consult an ophthalmologist for free on the expected results of a LASIK surgery for you.
*Warning: For proper medical advice about LASIK, please consult a LASIK Surgery and Eye Clinic in our directory.