Laser Eye Surgery

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by TSE, Jun 13, 2009.

  1. TSE macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2007
    Location:
    St. Paul, Minnesota
    #1
    Hi guys. I am 15, and have been wearing glasses/contacts since I was 6. My vision is at -4.25 and -4.00 and bad vision runs in the family.

    I have been tired of the hassle of glasses and contacts. I look better with contacts, but they constantly make my eyes red and itchy, and overall they kind of are a big part of my life in a bad way because I constantly have to screw with them. I have gone to my eye doctor before and he basically said that it's normal.

    Glasses, on the other hand, constantly get grease or fingerprints on them and give me a headache.

    Both of them are expensive, and I want to get laser eye surgery.

    -I have researched on it, and it basically says to wait until you stop growing, so wait until you are around 25. Is this true?

    -How long does the procedure take?

    -Does it hurt, or is it more annoying than painful for the first week?

    -How much does it cost? I was thinking of joining the military out of college, and I heard of getting discounts?

    -Does it give you perfect vision everytime?

    -Do I ever have to redo the procedure?

    -Can something go horribly wrong, like, I go completely blind?
     
  2. r.j.s Moderator emeritus

    r.j.s

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    #2
    Yes, it is true. If you have the surgery before your eyes are mature, they will only screw it up.

    The actual surgery, less than an hour. But there are several prep appointments that can span several weeks.

    I've heard LASIK does not hurt ... PRK (which is what I've had) hurts like hell - but is worth it, no chance of the "flap" reopening from any kind of trauma.

    Around $1000-1500 per eye. The military will do it for you for free, since you not having glasses is beneficial to the military's readiness.

    Nothing is guaranteed, but they aim for 20/40 ... I went from 20/400 to 20/15 in both eyes.

    Some people do, and if you pick a good clinic/doctor, any "do-overs" will be covered.

    Rare, but it can happen.
     
  3. conch575 macrumors 6502

    conch575

    Joined:
    May 29, 2009
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #3
    Better eyesight than me! I've been wearing glasses (well now contacts) since I was 8 and now I'm 16. My vision is at -5.00 and -4.75 and bad vision also does run in the family, I just can't get lasic because I'm not old enough and my prescription hasn't been stable for more than 2 years... It seems to change every 3-6 months.
     
  4. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #4
    Wasn't there a recent baseball player who failed in the LASIK surgery, cannot remember just remember hearing there is so and so now wearing glasses because his eye surgery bombed.

    And they tend to go to the best eye doctor in the area.

    Which is what I would say, look at the doctor and their independent success rate.

    They may tell you the industry rate, but screw that, if the doctor won't tell you what they get individually -- try another doctor.

    And waiting and paying twice as much or more at a renowned doctor, is better than risking a cut rate deal at a shylock.

    ----

    And yes, one of the eye doctors in the Phoenix Valley with tons of marketing (aka, son of gold medalist so and so) was suspended for having really horrid results. And was recently handed a lifetime medical ban, when he performed a minor clinical procedure (pulling stitches) last month while on suspension. His lifetime ban took 10 years to finally fall, and the number of patients with problems was quite high.
     
  5. r.j.s Moderator emeritus

    r.j.s

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    #5
    Could have been due to trauma ... any one that could potentially face a blow to the head is recommended to get PRK, since that is not susceptible to coming undone after being hit in the head.
     
  6. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #6
    I think they mentioned recent eye surgery, and was unable to return to wearing contacts.
     
  7. r.j.s Moderator emeritus

    r.j.s

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    #7
    Right, if he had LASIK, and was subsequently struck in the head, by ... a baseball perhaps, the flap that was cut to perform the LASIK could have come dislodged. That flap never heals permanently, so it's something you have to think about.
     
  8. TSE thread starter macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2007
    Location:
    St. Paul, Minnesota
    #8
    I play baseball and plan on playing baseball as a recreation until I'm 40, so perhaps I will go after that PRK... what's the difference? And does it really hurt that much?
     
  9. r.j.s Moderator emeritus

    r.j.s

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    #9
    In PRK, instead of cutting a flap, folding it back and shooting the laser, they scrape off the top layer of eyeball, shoot the laser and then place a clear contact over it as it grows back.

    You will go from horrible vision to clear immediately after the surgery, but by the end of the day, you wont be able to see anything. For the next week, you vision will slowly come back, and you will need to wear sunglasses all the time for about a month following surgery.

    During the first week, there is a very strict eyedrop regimen that you must follow, it includes lubricants and steroids (the steroids taste disgusting - you have a drain that runs from your eye to the back of your throat, so you can taste them).

    More info on PRK

    WARNING: POTENTIALLY DISTURBING VIDEO:
    Here is an actual video of PRK being performed. You cannot feel anything, but you can smell the burning while the laser is on.

    More info on LASIK
     
  10. dukebound85, Jan 10, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 11, 2012

    dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    5045 feet above sea level
    #10
    As per eye surgery, wait till your eyes level out. Otherwise, your vision would just get worse and you'd need it corrected again
     
  11. BreakGuy, Jan 11, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2012

    BreakGuy macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2009
    Location:
    NZ, South Pacific
    #11
    I've had iLASIK done and love the results. But there are a few things here that need clarification.
    I had my surgery when I was 18. Surgeon didn't have any issues with this. As long as your eyes have been stable (no change in health or acuity) for at least 2 years you should be fine, but at 15, I believe it's still too young. Wait till you're 18.

    Actual surgery took about 20 minutes for me. And I was a restless, nervous patient and had to stop the procedure a couple of times in order to help me to relax. Pre-surgery assessments took just a couple of hours and were done in the morning, surgery took place that afternoon.

    During iLASIK you will feel a slight pressure on your eyeball as the laser machine cuts the flap and corrects your eyes. For me, the worst pain was the anesthetic drops used to numb my eyes. They stung a little bit.

    Price varies, but it is expensive - but WELL worth the money.

    My vision went form 20/80 to 20/15 in both eyes and has stayed like that since. Absolutely fantastic.

    Usually, no. My surgeon deliberately performed and over-correction so my vision should stay as it is even if my eyes change. If something does go wrong, eg. under-correction it may be retouched for free. Check beforehand.

    Rare, but it can happen.[/QUOTE]As with any surgery, things can go wrong. I don't want to scare you but there are cases where things have gone wrong. These cases are far and few between. The procedure is 99.9% safe.

    My final piece of advice for anyone going for it, Don't do it on the cheap. We are talking about your eyes and your vision. You only get one pair of eyes so be careful. Be sure to go to a reputable, well-experienced surgeon and don't go looking for bargains. Life changing procedures like these will cost thousands of dollars so avoid the dark alley $300 offers.
     
  12. firestarter macrumors 603

    firestarter

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2002
    Location:
    Green and pleasant land
    #12
    I have relatively mild shortsightedness, and eye surgery is something I would never consider.

    A friend of mine went for surgery about a year back. He went to a very good and highly recommended centre.

    Following his surgery he experienced a good deal of discomfort and blurred vision, dry eyes and 'floaters'. He went back a few times in the first month and was told that this was normal.

    His vision improved - but at the 6 month point he was still experiencing some discomfort - and overall his vision was OK but not as clear as it had been prior to surgery when he used contacts. I didn't press him on it too much (he's a friend and I didn't want him to feel bad) but I think overall he regretted his decision.

    I just wanted to provide a different 'data point' for you. I wouldn't want to take the risk myself.
     
  13. MasterHowl macrumors 65816

    MasterHowl

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2010
    Location:
    North of England
    #13
    My next door neighbour got it done last year, and she said it was excruciating. she got back from the clinic and it felt like someone was squeezing onion juice into her eyes. So she went to bed and slept for 6 hours, woke up and her vision was perfect :) she says it was the best thing she ever did
     
  14. BreakGuy macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2009
    Location:
    NZ, South Pacific
    #14
    I didn't feel any pain. I went to sleep following the operation to avoid the "sand in the eye" feeling. Worked like a charm. Woke up the next morning with crystal clear vision.
     
  15. ender land macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2010
    #15
    Hm, an old thread, but one I'm interested in :)

    My vision is really bad uncorrected - something like -7.25/-5.75 - which gives me a strong appreciation for what vision I do have.

    I've fairly seriously thought about some sort of vision corrective surgery but, even with incredibly low odds of something happening I'm wary :)

    Not to mention that with contacts I see slightly better than 20/15 as is... though.. waking up and being able to see would be an incredible feeling.
     
  16. BreakGuy macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2009
    Location:
    NZ, South Pacific
    #16
    I completely know how you feel. I spent a good 12 - 18 months researching the procedure and reading stories people have shared about it. I've forgotten what it's like to wear glasses. I used to wake up and reach over to grab them only to realise they weren't there and I didn't need them anymore. Words can't describe that feeling.

    I understand your apprehension. It's surgery and surgery on your eyes for that matter. Definitely scary, no doubt. But I encourage you to do your own research, and decide whether you're up for it. It's amazing, life changing surgery and you'll never stop appreciating.
     
  17. ender land macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2010
    #17
    I imagine I will at some point. Once I have a bit more spare income as well, or perhaps even an insurance plan to cover it :)
     
  18. fireshot91 macrumors 601

    fireshot91

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2008
    Location:
    Northern VA
    #18
    I'm 17 (OP is my age), and my vision is about -6.00/-5.75 or something like that.

    For me, I got contacts when I was 15. My eyes are extremely sensitive. So much that the doctor couldn't even do the puffer-test when I was getting the contacts, much less put in the contact for me the first try. I was there sitting/poking my eye out for literally 8 hours trying to put in/take out my first contact. It was horrendous.


    But now, I can put in/take out contacts in less than a second.


    I would LOVE to get some surgery done to fix my vision, but it's not even an option for me, sadly. Parents, expenses, etc don't allow for it. Not to mention, I'd be scared to even go through with it.

    My vision first became bad in 3rd grade (When I was 8) and straight jumped from perfect to -2.50.
     
  19. seanf macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #19
    I had mine done about 18 months ago. It was painful for the first few hours after, but sleeping helped a lot. I then experienced discomfort for about 2 weeks and dryness for a couple of months. I am now very happy and it is lovely being able to see without my glasses. Expensive, but worth it in my opinion

    Sean :)
     

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