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Old 12-11-07, 08:12 PM   #1
LSPlo
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LASIK- Anyone had it?

I'm one of those dorks who had to get glasses in the first grade. I've been wearing contacts since high school. My vision kept getting worse and worse until about the time I went to college, and then it leveled out.

LASIK has been around for long enough now that I'm no longer afraid that something would go wrong with the procedure itself. The idea of cutting a flap of corneal tissue, on the other hand, continues to freak me out. Do you really have to be conscious for that? Can't they hold your eyelids open or something?

Anyway, contacts don't annoy me too much (dry eyes bother me the most), but it would be nice to just wake up and see clearly. Now, I'm not the kind of guy to get surgery just for convenience. The reason I'm even looking into LASIK is because I'm trying to get a job that requires me to have a certain level of vision without corrective devices. It kind of seems like cheating, but they do allow people to get surgery in order to meet this requirement. The job is such a good one that I would actually consider going down that road.

Anybody had LASIK? How bad was it when they cut that corneal flap? I read that they can cut it with a laser now, but that still freaks me out.
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Old 12-11-07, 08:31 PM   #2
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My wife has had it and went from 20-300 +/- to 20/15. She claims that it was the best thing she ever did. Then states after getting married to me, but I think she lying. She liked this better.

It was quick, easy and she had absolutely no issues. She felt no pain, only some pressure on the eye ball. They even had a big glass wall so you could see what was going on. The surgery literally took 15 minutes. It took longer to fill the paper work out than to have the procedure done. I wish I had a dvd of the process so she could see it, the little tool they use to cut the lens is pretty neat.

On the way home, she even mentioned that even though she had some goop in the eye to protect it, she could see things that she has never seen before unless she had contacts or glasses on. That was 20 mins after surgery. Just an amazing process.
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Old 12-11-07, 08:50 PM   #3
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I had it done during the summer of 2000. I still have perfect vision. Actual surgery only took seconds from what I remember then I went home, took some prescribed drugs, went to sleep and then woke with clear vision. I have no regrets with getting it done.
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Old 12-11-07, 09:23 PM   #4
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The best gift I have ever given myself.

I had it done last November. I went from 20/500 to 20/15. I went home able to see power lines for the first time since elementary school without the aide of lenses. I woke up the next day and did a double take at the alarm clock because it was CLEAR.

There is one side effect. Late into the evening, watching TV or on the computer I will just casually wander into the bathroom to take out my contact lenses that aren't there - just out of habit. When my eyes are tired I need to relax the old fashioned way - go to sleep.

FYI - if they don't tell you about it... I did have some rainbow affects for a few weeks, especially if driving at night. Just halos. It was "normal".
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Old 12-12-07, 09:01 AM   #5
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I have 20/15 in both eyes, but I'm considering getting Lasik just to savor the trippy halo and rainbow effects. I say go for it!
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Old 12-12-07, 09:09 AM   #6
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Eek, this really freaks me out. Especially since a friend of my sister's effectively went blind after a botched procedure. Anyway, I don't think it's been around long enough for us to know what the truly long term effects of the procedure are. My 2.
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Old 12-12-07, 09:20 AM   #7
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By the way, here's what the U.S. FDA has to say about risks of this elective surgery:

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Originally Posted by FDA
Some patients lose vision.
Some patients lose lines of vision on the vision chart that cannot be corrected with glasses, contact lenses, or surgery as a result of treatment.

Some patients develop debilitating visual symptoms.
Some patients develop glare, halos, and/or double vision that can seriously affect nighttime vision. Even with good vision on the vision chart, some patients do not see as well in situations of low contrast, such as at night or in fog, after treatment as compared to before treatment.

You may be under treated or over treated.
Only a certain percent of patients achieve 20/20 vision without glasses or contacts. You may require additional treatment, but additional treatment may not be possible. You may still need glasses or contact lenses after surgery. This may be true even if you only required a very weak prescription before surgery. If you used reading glasses before surgery, you may still need reading glasses after surgery.

Some patients may develop severe dry eye syndrome.
As a result of surgery, your eye may not be able to produce enough tears to keep the eye moist and comfortable. Dry eye not only causes discomfort, but can reduce visual quality due to intermittent blurring and other visual symptoms. This condition may be permanent. Intensive drop therapy and use of plugs or other procedures may be required.

Results are generally not as good in patients with very large refractive errors of any type.
You should discuss your expectations with your doctor and realize that you may still require glasses or contacts after the surgery.

For some farsighted patients, results may diminish with age.
If you are farsighted, the level of improved vision you experience after surgery may decrease with age. This can occur if your manifest refraction (a vision exam with lenses before dilating drops) is very different from your cycloplegic refraction (a vision exam with lenses after dilating drops).

Long-term data are not available.
LASIK is a relatively new technology. The first laser was approved for LASIK eye surgery in 1998. Therefore, the long-term safety and effectiveness of LASIK surgery is not known.
When safe alternatives like glasses and contacts are available, why would you risk it? These are you eyes we're talking about...
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Old 12-12-07, 09:22 AM   #8
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Eek, this really freaks me out. Especially since a friend of my sister's effectively went blind after a botched procedure. Anyway, I don't think it's been around long enough for us to know what the truly long term effects of the procedure are. My 2.
umm lasik has been around since 1990. 17 years. I don't know how they came up with 1998 ? oh that
is FDA approval. but it's been done a lot longer than that.

the long term effects would be the night halos from scarring

prk, since 1996
--

if you go to a big clinic, they triple pre-check you for eligibility. sure the risk of going blind is still there, but it is pretty
small.


ps: once you are doped up on valium you won't really mind them lasing your eyeballs. it takes the edge off the stress
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Old 12-12-07, 09:28 AM   #9
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umm lasik has been around since 1990. 17 years. I don't know how they came up with 1998 ? oh that
is FDA approval. but it's been done a lot longer than that.

the long term effects would be the night halos from scarring

prk, since 1996
--

if you go to a big clinic, they triple pre-check you for eligibility. sure the risk of going blind is still there, but it is pretty small.
He has a point. Even if you go with 17, that's not really long term. In 17 years my life won't even be halfway over yet (hopefully).
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Old 12-12-07, 09:31 AM   #10
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Yeah, I dunno. I don't deny that I know a lot of people who say it's been a great thing... but it just freaks me out. I'll stick with the glasses and occasional contacts.
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Old 12-12-07, 09:32 AM   #11
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When safe alternatives like glasses and contacts are available, why would you risk it? These are you eyes we're talking about...
I might risk it for the almighty dollar. I'm still trying to decide. Uncorrected vision must test 20/100 or better in each eye. I hope I pass that test, but I'm not sure. I tried to print an online vision test thing, but I'm not sure how accurate it is.
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Old 12-12-07, 09:33 AM   #12
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They give you valium! Reason number three to get lasik: halos, rainbows, valium.
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Old 12-12-07, 09:33 AM   #13
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Had it once, and will probably do it again....eyes are still changing somewhat.

and for the record...PRK was developed back in the 60's.
LASIK was developed in the 80's but did not become available to the public until the mid to late 90's. These surgeries have a pretty long track record.
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Old 12-12-07, 09:34 AM   #14
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How much is lasik these days?
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Old 12-12-07, 09:34 AM   #15
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How much is lasik these days?
Depends on many factors...who you go to, what needs to be done, etc.
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Old 12-12-07, 09:35 AM   #16
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How many eyes you have.
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Old 12-12-07, 09:43 AM   #17
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Well, I am from WV....so 3
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Old 12-12-07, 09:53 AM   #18
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I cannot, will not. Any horror movie I've ever seen that brings a needle close to the eye makes me cringe.

However I know several people who have had it and they are all glad they did. One of my Mom's friends had her cataracts taken care of - and they performed lasik at the same time. And no one had any problems either. But - one of my side jobs - I worked in a lawyer's office who specialized in medical lawsuits - these guys defended the doctors - and some people DID have problems or had to have it redone. But like I said - the people I know who have had it done (probably 6) are glad they did it.
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Old 12-12-07, 10:02 AM   #19
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He has a point. Even if you go with 17, that's not really long term. In 17 years my life won't even be halfway over yet (hopefully).
yeah but your vision will be clear for that time.

the thing is, if it hasn't happened in 1 year after having the surgery, it ain't gonna happen.

like a scar on your arm or leg, once it is healed up it ain't gonna do much changing
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Old 12-12-07, 10:12 AM   #20
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I had it done 5 years ago by the (supposedly) best guy in Colorado. Heck he even invented some of the instruments used by most LASIK surgeons. Went from very nearsighted to slightly farsighted. Blurry vision with glasses but okay with contacts. Dry eyes and getting worse. I am one of the few that it did not work for and I am sorry that I did it; and yes I have been re-evaluated three times - including by two different opthomolgists. They all say - "Sorry. we don't think anything can help."
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Old 12-12-07, 10:19 AM   #21
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like a scar on your arm or leg, once it is healed up it ain't gonna do much changing
But your eyes do change with age. That's why we geezers so often need reading glasses or bifocals. One concern I've seen expressed is how having had LASIK done will affect that "normal" change. I don't think the questions about that have been answered yet...not enough LASIK recipients have aged enough, perhaps.

The Wikipedia article has a lot of references http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LASIK
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Old 12-12-07, 10:33 AM   #22
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I've thought about it, but too risky, IMO. with my luck I'd be one of the few it doesn't work on or have somebody who botched the operation.
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Old 12-12-07, 10:58 AM   #23
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I'm too nearsighted to even consider it.
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Old 12-12-07, 11:15 AM   #24
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I'm too nearsighted to even consider it.
I was a -8.75 in one eye and -8.25(or something very close to that) in the other eye. It was no problem.
You can't be too much more nearsighted than that.
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Old 12-12-07, 11:21 AM   #25
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Both I and the wife had it done. Other family members also. For me Post Op it felt a bit like there as a hair in my eyes some of the time and also it reminded me of the burning felt after swimming with too much chlorine in the pool (but not as bad).

The one huge caution I can think of that gets missed is that Lasik is not a magic. What it does is change where the range your eye can focus is. It does NOT increase that range. (Oh it can and in my case did correct astigmatism).

I went in very confident. The Opthamoligist I was seeing had previously told me to wait, that my case and the technology did not make for an ideal case. When he finally said things were good I knew that his opinion could be trusted.

Be sure to ask about things that would make Lasik a bad idea. There are several factors that indicate increased risk. Also I would not advise anyone whose vision is still changing to go with Lasik unless there is some compeling reason.
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