Lasik

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Vyrosama
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Lasik

Post by Vyrosama »

So....I'm thinking about getting Lasik done. Anyone done it, know someone who did it, etc?

I have my screening tomorrow; I might not even qualify as a candidate for the procedure. Been reading up on it and other possible alternatives but certain complications that may occur still freak me out a bit. I've read somewhere that the possibility of any complication is 1:10,000 (but complications could mean something as trivial as severe dry eye to something devastating as permanent vision loss).

I have thought about just doing one eye at a time so if something does go wrong...I could always wear an eye patch. But for some reason, I've always thought that for things like this...it's either all or nothing....no pansy half-assedness.

8)

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Post by Jonathan »

The report on our Intel general mailling list is that you don't want to go to the $395 discount vision guys, go to the respected masters of the field. Preferably someone who pioneered something. :) But definitely someone at a university hospital or something similar.

My vision is -8.xx diopters in both eyes. I have seriously contemplated getting it done. I'm more or less waiting for a third generation method because I am also fearful of the complications. PRK kinda sucked, LASIK is better, LASIK with wavefront guidance is getting pretty good, what next.

Definitely go wavefront.

Vyrosama
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Post by Vyrosama »

So I went in for screening and apparently I definitely qualify for the procedure. I had originally thought that I might not qualify since:
a. I might be in risk of severe dry eye syndrome
b. I had recently changed subscription about 4 months ago
c. I have a slight astigmatism (my eyes are not perfectly spherical, more resemblance to a football shape)

but from what I gathered after the tests:
a. they didn't say anything so I guess I'm not at risk.

b. This would normally be a concern for younger ppl since a change in subscription means your eyes haven't stabilized in shape and growth but I guess I'm too old for that

c. This is usually a concern if you have a thin cornea since there is less material to work (burn off) with to reshape your cornea. But apparently I've been blessed with a thicker than normal cornea (go me?!)

The screening process was painless and my appointment only took an hour. They do the typical eye exam stuff plus a check for cornea thickness (one computer generated, the other they numb your eyes with a special eyedrop and then stick something in your eye [a needle maybe? I didn't feel a thing...nor could I see it anyway]). Oh, they also use an eye drop to dilate your eyes which sucks since things look blurry now (the effects are suppose to wear off in 4 hours).

I'll continue my post/ramble in a bit...too blurry lol...... :shock:

Dave
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Post by Dave »

Does vision insurance cover any of these expenses? Or.. err I dont even know what eye insurance does cover since I turned it down. Contacts/new glasses?
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Post by Alan »

Definitely go to the best available in the area. If you can't afford the best, don't get it done. There might be somewhere you can find out complication rates, or at least which places have been sued. Otherwise ask around, especially if you know any doctors.

Make sure you get screened by the same place that's going to do your procedure. Make sure you give a thorough medical history and find out about your family medical history. Those things are way more important than you might expect, for certain things your history and family history are more important than any physical exams or tests they do. Don't hide ANY symptoms you might be feeling, no matter how embarrassing or irrelevant you might think it is.

And to repeat: Don't cheap out, get the best.
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Vyrosama
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Post by Vyrosama »

Dave wrote:Does vision insurance cover any of these expenses? Or.. err I dont even know what eye insurance does cover since I turned it down. Contacts/new glasses?
Hmm, I'm not sure what vision insurance is either, but your healthcare plan might cover some expenses. Or if your company offers some form of the flexspend account, you can use pre-tax dollars to pay for it.

Jonathan
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Post by Jonathan »

My vision insurance covers eye exams (with copay) and gives discounts on lenses and contacts. I think I might have gotten a frame discount, not sure. It was a flat discount, not a percentage, so the super high index lenses were still expensive.

Yeah, a lot of people switch to the account insurance for a year to pay for elective surgery like LASIK.

George
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Post by George »

NG had a vision "plan" (I'm not really sure its fair to call it insurance) that payed part of the exam, frame, and lenses. It was a reasonable deal on the years that I got glasses, and mediocre on the off years. It explicitly didn't cover any of the laser options. However, there was a group discount at some specific provider.

And yeah, a lot of people uses the stupid flexible spending accounts to pay for it. I'm sure most of them lost more money at the end of the year than they saved on taxes.

Vyrosama
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Post by Vyrosama »

Vyrosama wrote:I'll continue my post/ramble in a bit...too blurry lol...... :shock:
Whoops, forgot to post an update.

Soo...In a nutshell:
I've decided to hold off on LASIK. After reading up on some of the complications etc, it seems more of a makeshift quick fix instead of an actually solution to glasses-free corrected vision.


Originally, my two primary goals I wanted to accomplish with LASIK was to:

a. Stop the need to wear glasses or contacts to see 20/20
Statistically speaking, I have a favorable chance of getting 20/20 or better (85% and 90% with wavefront technology). My stance on wavefront technology is mixed. From what I've read, it's just a hoax, a marketing scheme to charge more money for something that doesn't solve any of the problems caused by LASIK but adds a whole new bunch of complications that can go wrong. I do believe it does improve your chances of getting 20/20 though but it's not something specific to wavefront and can be added to any standard laser.

This article detailing this:
http://www.revophth.com/index.asp?page=1_661.htm

Or you can read why wavefront is a hoax in general:
http://www.lasikflap.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=86

As for my percentages, these numbers vary from site to site and it might be lower mostly due to my higher degree of myopia (nearsightedness of -6D) It is also noted that the chances totally depend on the quality of the surgeon. The more successful refractive surgeries preformed with the SAME prescription as you are will increase the chances of obtaining 20/20 (this is primarily due to the calibration settings for the laser they use...so don't be the first 300 patients used for trial and error).

b. To improve the quality of my vision during night time
From what I've read, this is not a reality. In fact, studies have shown that the quality of vision will get worse after LASIK, especially in dim light. The doctor I went to claimed that wavefront technology could "improve" my night time vision. This might have some merit, but see the above links to make your own informed decision. I'm still skeptical though.

From the people I'v known that have gotten LASIK, they all seem satisfied. However this might be due to cognitive dissonance. It is a permanent surgery and psychologically it is better to compromise the nuisances (pain, halos, star-bursts, etc.) and focus on the positive. As one of my coworkers have said "If I don't focus on the halos, I don't see them".

I still might do PRK or LASEK. This avoids the complications involved with the cornea flap. However, I've heard the recovery time is much longer and LASEK is not FDA approved. I still need to do some more research on it. And if anything, I'll wait till allergy season is over. My eyes are very dry and itchy to begin with; I can't bear to imagine what would happen after LASIK/LASEK/PRK or any other form of refractive eye surgery.

Interesting LASEK thread:
http://www.lasikflap.com/forum/viewtopi ... ight=lasek

I guess what I need to do now is to balance the pros and cons. Am I willing to sacrifice vision quality for vision acuity? Odds are, I will get some bad side effect after surgery. Dry eye is a given, the only unknown is the level of severity and if it will get better or not. Same goes for other things like floaters, halos, star-bursts, loss of contrast sensitivity, etc. It might just be a minor nuisance that I can learn to ignore or it can life altering in that I will not be able to see well at night. Also, if I don't get 20/20 on the first try, am I willing to go through the process again (in the biz they call it an "enhancement") to see if they can get it right the second time around (and of course, the risks stay the same if not greater).

After all, in life, you don't get something for nothing.....




P.S. Reading my rant again...seems like I'm kinda biased against LASIK now.......make your own decision or post what you think.

some good links to start off:

http://www.lasikflap.com is a good resource for information against LASIK
http://www.fda.gov/cdrh/lasik/ what the FDA has to say about LASIK

Dave
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Post by Dave »

Just wait for stem cell research to advance to the point where you can print out your own eyes and then install them with some elbow grease.

As the only one on this forum without vision problems, I advocate a strict regiment of diet coke and cake.
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Jonathan
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Re:

Post by Jonathan »

Jonathan wrote:I'm more or less waiting for a third generation method because I am also fearful of the complications. PRK kinda sucked, LASIK is better, LASIK with wavefront guidance is getting pretty good, what next.
http://optometrytimes.modernmedicine.co ... zed-vision

Apparently, topography LASIK.
The Contoura Vision system neutralizes all the aberrations on the cornea, which are the aberrations we should treat with refractive surgery. We are not treating any of the aberrations associated with the lens of the eye, which we all know change over the life of a patient.
Well, this shit sounds like an ad, but an appealing one!

Anybody have any clue about this stuff? I think I would probably go to Emory Healthcare in Atlanta if I got it done.

quantus
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Re: Lasik

Post by quantus »

If you do lots of flights or high altitude hikes/touring then you can get blurry vision from lasik, but not sure about this new method. I'm not thrilled about blurry vision on planes. Also, if your vision changes as you get older, can you keep getting it done, or what's the limit and what are the additional side effects from going back?

How much can they correct? Can they correct a crazy perscription like Vinny's or George?
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Jonathan
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Re: Lasik

Post by Jonathan »

quantus wrote:Also, if your vision changes as you get older, can you keep getting it done, or what's the limit and what are the additional side effects from going back?
I am fairly confident aging is "aberrations associated with the lens of the eye." (aka the answer is No) Dunno about the other stuff.

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Re: Lasik

Post by Jonathan »

https://mobile.nytimes.com/2018/06/11/w ... ision.html

Complications. Horrible, horrible complications.

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Re: Lasik

Post by Alan »

I remember when I was interviewing for residency (in 2009), I had gone to an after-interview dinner attended by residents and interviewees. I hadn't rented a car, and had just gotten around using taxis. Prior to the dinner, one of the other interviewees asked me if I'd be willing to drive her car after dinner to my hotel, which was very close to her hotel. She felt comfortable driving the several hundred feet between our hotels but not the 5 miles or so from the restaurant to the hotel. Apparently, she had gotten Lasik a year or so prior, and headlights caused her to see starbursts and halos, to the point that she had to pull to the side of the road whenever there was oncoming traffic. She really, really regretted getting the procedure, which was done by a friend of her father's (who was also a physician).
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