Many patients are curious about LASIK: Good questions ask the Eye Doctor. What makes a good candidate? Are THEY a good candidate? What are the risks? Have I had it? What are my opinions? What are their surgical options?

The LASIK question, in Dr Allen’s mind, comes down to 3 things:

  1. How old is the patient?
  2. What is their prescription?
  3. What do I think is going to happen with their vision immediately and in the future?

lasik eye surgery

A good LASIK candidate is between the ages of 25 and 58, a GREAT candidate is between 25-37 or 45-55. Earlier than 25, your prescription might change. Between 38 and 45 your near vision will undergo a dramatic change. It is better to wait until after the change to determine how to proceed to get the best vision with the least reliance on eye glasses. After 55, your chance of developing cataracts increases, and your prescription starts to shift due to changes in the lens of your eye. There are better procedures for those undergoing lens changes. It is legal to do LASIK on anyone 18 and up, but the best age ranges vary.

Prescription also determines whether you are a good candidate. LASIK limits are -11 for nearsightedness and +4.00 for farsightedness. LASIK does correct for astigmatism, too. The thickness of your cornea and the curve of your cornea also limit whether LASIK can or should be done. If your cornea is thin or flat (or steep for far sighted people), then your prescription may not work. If your prescription doesn’t work for LASIK, there are other types of surgery that may work well to get you out of contacts or glasses. If you go in to a surgeon and they say it “might” work, or you are on the edge as a candidate, you may want to reconsider surgery. Irregular corneas can cause vision problems and many times can’t be corrected with disposable contacts.

At premier vision we do have patients that have very little prescription & are interested in LASIK. They have to wear glasses when driving at night or on the computer, but mostly their vision is very good. If you only wear glasses 30% of the time or less, you must ask yourself: what is my benefit from LASIK?   LASIK is a very safe procedure, but all surgeries have complications. Dr Allen’s personal opinion on LASIK “The reason I personally haven’t had LASIK is I only wear glasses on the computer. I am about to be 42, and my near vision is changing. My eyes are dry even without contacts. All of these factors make me a terrible candidate for LASIK”. Analyze your Risk/Benefit ratio. Consider the change in near that will happen after 40: will your uncorrected vision help you at near to keep you out of readers? There are many different aspects to take into account to determine whether you should have LASIK or not. All things considered though, Dr Allen is a big believer in LASIK, because it changes people’s lives.

LASIK can have life changing effect on people’s lives, according to an article from many years ago. An independent study (having nothing to do with LASIK or any eye surgeons) had people list the five biggest things that had changed their life. They were:

  1. Get Married
  2. Have a child
  3. Death of a spouse or child
  4. Buying their first home
  5. LASIK

That’s how powerful LASIK is. That’s how much it can change your life.

If you do have questions about LASIK and what it can do for you, come in to premier vision for a consultation or ask about it at your next exam.