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Lasik


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22 replies to this topic

#1 of 23 Chris Huber

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Posted February 18 2009 - 08:22 AM

Hey guys, anyone have this procedure done?
-Can you tell me about your experience and the procedure?
-Did you need to take out contacts and wear glasses for a certain time frame before the surgery?
After the procedure, was your site instant?
Any side effects after a few weeks? (dryness in eyes, etc...)

All I have is nearsightedness, so procedure should be straight forward. I just wanted to hear your experiences.

Thanks.

#2 of 23 LewB

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Posted February 18 2009 - 10:09 AM

Chris:

I just had PRK done on one eye last month. Same laser, just a different way of getting to the cornea.
I wore soft lenses and had to stop wearing them 2 weeks before the procedure. I was given 10mg (I think) of Valium before the procedure. I was given a shitload of eye drops. The procedure took less than 15 mins. I was able to see better as soon as I sat up when the doc was done.
I was given a kit of stuff to use for/on the eye. 3 different types of eye drops (I'm still using 1 of them), a sleeping pill for that night, along with an Rx for a handful of Lyrica (he said it helped with the sensitivity that PRK patients have to deal with during the first few days after).
Like I said, this was PRK and there is more 'discomfort' after so I would think that your post-op regiment might be less than mine. Good luck !

#3 of 23 CameronJ

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Posted February 18 2009 - 11:42 AM

Best money I've ever spent.

Had it done about 4 years ago - never looked back.

I was wearing glasses already - so I can't answer your second question. Sight was instant after the procedure - and I had the typical side effects, eyes were dry for about 6 months, and I still get occasional dryness.

Two things that were strange for me. After numbing my eyes the doctor put a mark on my eyeball with a plain old ball point pen. It was just really weird having that pen heading for my eyes.

The other was something I wished he would have warned me about - at one point during the procedure they do something that puts pressure on your eye and caused everything to go dark for a couple of seconds. I was about ready to freak out when he did the first eye - but I was ready for it on the second.

#4 of 23 Jacinto

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Posted February 18 2009 - 11:46 AM

I had this done just over a year ago and I'm really happy with the results. I believe I had to avoid contacts for three weeks before the procedure. The surgery itself is quick, but strangely unsettling. I remember thinking that I felt like I was in a weird Kubrik sci-fi film or something. Anyway, like Lew, I was given a small dose of valium, and the rest was really quick and straightforward. I opted for the laser incision on the flap, and that was pretty cool -- a strange light, a few clicks and it was done. The most discomfort during the entire procedure is having your eyes clamped open, but even that is pretty minor. When the work is actually done to reshape things, it's really cool to watch your vision get blurry as they pull the flap out of the way first.

After the whole thing I was given a little pain medication, some antibiotic drops, and some eye-shields that I had to leave on my eyes overnight. My wife drove me home and I went to bed for the night. The next morning I woke up, took off the shields, and voila, I could see. I went back to the doctor's office for my next day evaluation and could see 20/15. In the following month, my vision fluctuated a little between that and 20/20, where it ended up staying. The doctor recommended wearing the eye shields when I slept so as not to accidentally rub my eyes for the first week. My eyes never got terribly dry, but I kept them very moist with drops for the first few weeks anyway. The only side effect I've noticed is slight haloing from headlights and streetlights when driving at night, but I used to have that with my contact lenses too, so I can definitely live with that.

I remember the first trip I took three months after my surgery, and how awesome it felt to not pack glasses, a case for my contacts, saline, and drops. My toiletries consisted of a toothbrush, toothpaste, and deodorant. It has been incredibly freeing and I am still absolutely thrilled that I had it done.
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#5 of 23 Quincy

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Posted February 18 2009 - 02:10 PM

I had the procedure done about a year and a half ago, its been the best thing I ever spent $4k on. I wore glasses before so I'm not sure about the contacts but the surgery went pretty fast like everyone else above said. I'm not sure about everyone else but the part for me that was the most unpleasant (more of an irritant )was about 20-30 minutes after surgery when the numbing eye drops wore off my eyes were really watery and it hurt to keep them open. But I went home took my 1 Valium pill had a 4 hour nap and when I woke up I was good to go. Vision fluctuate from about 20/15 to 20/20.

#6 of 23 Philip Hamm

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Posted February 18 2009 - 11:59 PM

Most people who have Lasik have very good experiences. However, keep in mind that it -is- a surgical procedure and there are very real risks.
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#7 of 23 Kirk Gunn

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Posted February 19 2009 - 07:43 AM

My wife had lasik a few years back. Very quick procedure with no issues (and she is a wimp). Still wears glasses for driving at night because something about the light refractions affect her, but that's it.

Prior to the surgery she got seasick constantly, now she handles the boat without issue ! Well worth it for that bonus alone !!!!!

#8 of 23 Chris Huber

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Posted February 19 2009 - 12:18 PM

Thanks for all the comments guys. Much appreiated. Keep em coming if you have them.

#9 of 23 Jim_F

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Posted February 19 2009 - 03:43 PM

It's been about 8 years since I had my monovision LASIK done. My left eye is my dominant eye and was the more nearsighted one. Had I gotten both eyes fully corrected, I'd need reading glasses by now.

The procedure was different from any previous experience I'd had, but much less uncomfortable than a typical dentist visit. No sedation nor pain medication was required.

My corrected eye is no longer 20/15 and probably less than 20/20, but no driving or reading glasses for me. Slight haloes at night, no worse than i had with contacts.
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#10 of 23 Will_B

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Posted February 19 2009 - 08:06 PM

My housemate had his eyes done 2 years ago. They remain too dry for comfort. Granted we're in a dry climate, but, this bothers him. Also, at night when his irises are at their widest and thus include the surgery circle, he gets lots of flaring light from oncoming headlights etc. But everyone's night vision gets worse as one ages anyway, so I don't know if this is much worse than it would have eventually been at night anyway. Primarily it is the dryness that bothers him.
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#11 of 23 Hugh Jackes

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Posted February 20 2009 - 02:24 AM

Nearly 6 years ago; I have never regretted it.

The process was unpleasant but absolutely painless. Unpleasant because 6 years ago was still the era of the steel blade slicing into and making the corneal flap. I saw it coming. (S h u d d e r ! ). But, again, no pain. The absolute inability to make out what my eyes were seeing when the flap was rolled back was very disconcerting, but that only lasted 90 seconds or so per eye.

I had these weird protective lenses taped to my face as my wife drove me home. Semi-opaque lensens but with holes in them that I could see through if I turned my head to aim the holes at what I wanted to see. It seemed clearer, but with only these limited apertures to look through it was hard to tell.

It was a Friday, and that's the night in my family when the kids take turns picking dinner. My son chose In n Out Burger. Everyone in the place stared at me. I was pretty sure, though that I could more clearly see the shingles on the rooves of the houses on the hill above In n Out more clearly.

The next morning was the big reveal, taking the tape and lenses off. As soon as I did, I looked out the bedroom window and was able to read the address of the house across the street, something I hadn't been able to do the day before.

A week of eye drops (one an anti-biotic and the other a steroid anti-inflammatory), wearing goggles at night, taking care to keep all water (shower and sweat) out of my eyes, and admonitions from the doctor to not rub my eyes. I still vividly remembered the bitter taste in my mouth when I put the steroid drops in my eyes.

I used to notice dryness and flares from headlights, stars, or the moon at night. Annoying, but, I thought, a fair trade for the man-made miracle that I experienced every time I looked around. But over time (again, 6 years), those side effects have diminished to the point where I no longe notice them. I can't quite tell you for sure when they went away, but it was about 6 months ago that I suddenly thought to myself, "Hey? I just noticed something."

My eyesight 6 years on is 20:15 (the same as it was the day after my Lasik, in my post-op check-up). I do need reading glasses for very small typefaces, but not for reading a newspaper or a book with normal type. The Lasik doctor advised me ahead of time that that might be the case. On the other hand, I'm 50; who's to say I wouldn't need them anyway?

One other side effect. Someone very close to me died about 4 months after the Lasik. I cried like a baby frequently, oceans of tears. My eyes ached more than I recall them doing when I had teary moments before the Lasik. Occasionally, I still experience triggers and have to have a good cry. macho man that I am. That extreme achiness from tears has not dimisished.

Best of luck. Keep us posted.
I have learned that some pain cannot be healed, but must be endured. I believe our Higher Power will help us to endure and find peace. I loved the boy with the utmost love of which my soul is capable and he is taken from me-yet in the agony of my spirit in surrendering such a treasure, I feel a thousand times richer than if I had never possessed it."
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#12 of 23 Hugh Jackes

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Posted February 20 2009 - 03:03 AM

Oh, and in answer to your question, I wore my contacts to my Lasik appointment and dumped them in the trash once he had confirmed that we were going forward with the surgery.
I have learned that some pain cannot be healed, but must be endured. I believe our Higher Power will help us to endure and find peace. I loved the boy with the utmost love of which my soul is capable and he is taken from me-yet in the agony of my spirit in surrendering such a treasure, I feel a thousand times richer than if I had never possessed it."
-- William Wordsworth 1812

 

#13 of 23 Aaron Silverman

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Posted February 20 2009 - 09:04 AM

My sister's boyfriend went in for Lasik and at the last minute, the doctor decided that for some reason they couldn't use the laser on his eyes and had to use the old knife instead. Apparently the pain was quite bad, but I think he's happy with the results.
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#14 of 23 Mike O'Connell

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Posted February 21 2009 - 04:45 AM

I had it done about 6 weeks ago. I echo everyones thoughts above - I love it.

I have a slight muscle twitch in my right eye, but I had that before and if I rest my eyes it goes away.

I had the surgery at 1 PM and watched the National championship football game that night - no problems - and was cleared to drive the next day. I am 20/20 in both eyes and can read everything closeup no problem.

I am still using the saline drops as my surgeon recommends them 4 times a day for the first 90 days.

I had very bad astigmatism and often would catch my toes on a step and "trip" going up stairs due to the difference in refraction between my glasses and looking under my glasses. I have not had a toe catch on a stair since!

Mike

#15 of 23 Scott Strang

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Posted March 06 2009 - 01:50 AM

So far these postings seem at least somewhat positive.

What I would like to know is how many "accidents" occur every year while doing this surgery. Surely some have occured.

What bothers me is that this is a surgery that appears to have absolutely zero room for error. I would hate to have this done only to come out of it legally blind.

#16 of 23 David Willow

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Posted March 06 2009 - 02:51 AM

Sorry I didn't see this topic earlier... I had LASIK done 3 years ago and I'm glad I did. I was on the fence for a few years until a few coworkers had it done and liked it (years later).

Listen to these podcasts for some really good info. The Joy of LASIK

As I understand it, the 'all laser' lasik is actually harder on your eye than using a blade. Mine was done with a blade. It was painless and quick. I used the eye drops for about 6 months (as needed). I bought a box with 100 in it, ended up throwing 30 away after they expired.

Any yes, I did stop wearing my contacts 2 weeks in advance.

Good luck.

#17 of 23 David Willow

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Posted March 06 2009 - 02:58 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Strang
So far these postings seem at least somewhat positive.

What I would like to know is how many "accidents" occur every year while doing this surgery. Surely some have occured.

What bothers me is that this is a surgery that appears to have absolutely zero room for error. I would hate to have this done only to come out of it legally blind.

You are correct. No room for error. That thought alone kept me from doing it for a few years.

However, the whole procedure is handled by a computer. If the doctor sets it up correctly, there should be no problems.

Most of the issues I found in my research were caused by doctors performing the surgery on folks who should not have had it done. The screening should have eliminated them as candidates. Unfortunately there are doctors who only want the money and are willing to risk a bad outcome.

A big red flag would be an eye exam place sending you to a doctor to have the surgery and then doing the follow up themselves. Other things to look at are your screening results. Ask for the numbers and compare them to acceptable numbers you find on the internet. If, for example, the thickness of the cornea is to thin and you doctor wants to do the surgery anyway, run as fast as you can from the office. Just be sure to put you glasses back on first so you don't trip Posted Image

#18 of 23 LewB

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Posted March 06 2009 - 05:29 AM

My Dr. said that most of the 'bad outcomes' occur as the result of the surgeon not doing the full work up and relying on the referral from someone else.
My initial exam took the better part of 2 hours and the dilating drops used were extra strength (lasted 'till the next day).
As I said before I had PRK (covering of cornea scrubbed off) on one eye in January. The doc suggested PRK because I had fewer cells (he didn't say thin cornea) after many years of contact lense use.
I was more than -6 nearsighted, right now I am about +1 far sighted. The doc said they over correct and then the eye usually 'comes into range' as it heals. My recovery has been slower than I would have hoped for and I am currently wearing a contact on that eye to correct the far sightedness. He said that there is a possibility that I'd need a 'touch up' but only after waiting at least 6 months. While I'm not happy about this, what I am happy about is the fact that the doc suggested the PRK even though there is a longer recovery and I would guess more post surgery follow-up for him for the same fee as the LASIK. I have been back several times and each time they re-run many of the tests to see how my eye is progressing. I believe that my sight has started to improve and that the doc will not leave me 'out in the cold' All the follow ups have been covered under the fee I paid. I got a few referrals from others before I went to this guy. He has been doing laser surgery for 15 years. Make sure you are going to a capable surgeon.

#19 of 23 David Willow

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Posted March 06 2009 - 06:48 AM

My Doc suggested PRK as well since that is the one he likes best. It wasn't because I was not a good candidate for LASIK. It was my choice to go with LASIK since I did not want the long recovery time. The problem with LASIK vs. PRK is the eye never completely heals from LASIK - the flap is a weak spot. Don't let that scare you - it would still take a good amount of trauma to dislodge it. Enough to damage the eye in other ways....

#20 of 23 Scott Strang

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Posted March 06 2009 - 10:26 AM

I've been through been through eye trauma before due to my stupidity and not wearing goggles while mowing.

I had to keep my eye lubbed up with Stye. Otherwise the hole kept having it's healed surface pulled off by my eye lid.


That being a small scale injury makes the whole "flap" thing sound like torture.




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