Are You A Good Candidate For Laser Eye Surgery?

Posted on: 23 February 2022


Laser eye surgery can improve multiple conditions that make it difficult for people to see properly. Many people who have laser eye surgery are able to stop wearing glasses or contact lenses. 

Talk to your eye surgeon about your vision issues, health history, and any other medical conditions to help make a decision about whether laser eye surgery is right for you.

Eye Health and Vision

Laser eye surgery can help correct vision problems due to nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. People who have eye diseases that cause progressive deterioration of vision and thinning of the corneas, such as keratoconus, won't benefit from laser surgery.

People who have chronic eye conditions or infections, such as uveitis, keratitis, or herpes simplex that affect the eyes, aren't good candidates for laser eye surgery. 

Laser surgery can exacerbate dry eyes, so it isn't a good option for people who suffer from chronically dry eyes. Other eye problems, such as glaucoma and cataracts, can also disqualify a patient from laser eye surgery.

Medical Conditions

Patients with certain chronic medical conditions are not good candidates for laser eye surgery. Any health condition that affects the immune system, such as HIV, rheumatoid arthritis, and lupus, can increase the risk of infection. 

People on immunosuppressive medications are also at higher risk for complications. Laser eye surgery can sometimes be performed on people who take these medications if the surgeon and patient agree and understand the increased risks.

Diabetic people who experience retinopathy shouldn't undergo laser eye surgery because it won't improve their vision. Diabetics who don't have retinopathy may not be good candidates if their medication changes frequently since these fluctuations can lower the accuracy of laser surgery.

People who are pregnant or who take steroid medications may experience changes in their vision and should wait until their vision is stable before they undergo eye surgery. 

Risks of Laser Eye Surgery

Laser eye surgery is safe for most people who are good candidates for the procedure. Complications are possible, but they're rare.

Many laser eye surgery patients experience mild side effects, such as dry eyes or short-term visual changes, like halos or double vision. Most side effects clear up on their own within days or weeks.

In rare cases, dryness can persist for many months. Prescription eye drops can ease discomfort, but if the dryness persists, eye surgeons often place plugs in the tear ducts to prevent the tears from draining away from the eyes.

If the tissue removed from the cornea is removed unevenly, it could result in astigmatism which might require further surgery, glasses, or contacts to correct.

If you have questions about laser eye surgery, contact a surgeon in your area.