LASIK, PRK &
Clear Lens Exchange
Vision Correction Surgery
About Bladeless LASIK
Bladeless LASIK is the most common type of vision correction surgery that we perform at South Jersey Eye Physicians. LASIK Eye Surgery is a method of corneal laser eye surgery that we can use to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism with a quick visual recovery and minimal discomfort. LASIK Surgery is “lamellar eye surgery” because it is performed between the layers of corneal tissue. This is accomplished by creating a very thin flap of corneal tissue that can be lifted and the laser energy applied, followed by returning of the flap to its original position without the need for stitches.
What to Expect During Your LASIK Procedure
To perform Bladeless LASIK we use a three step process:
- During the first step, a “flap” is created with a femtosecond laser so that your LASIK Surgery will actually be done as a Bladeless All Laser LASIK procedure.
- During the first step, we carefully fold the “flap” over and allow the inner layer of the cornea to be visible so that the laser energy can be applied. The actual application of the Excimer Laser can take from 2-15 seconds depending on the amount of correction that you require.
- During the third or final step, we will carefully replace the “flap” into its original position and allow it to adhere in position. The LASIK flap is remarkable in that it achieves its position without requiring the use of sutures or stitches.
What to Expect After Your LASIK Procedure
LASIK permits the healing and visual recovery process to be quick and predictable for most patients. For a few days after your LASIK Eye Surgery, you will need to be careful not to rub or bump your eyes. It is expected that you will have a mild “sandy” or “gritty” sensation during the first day or so after your LASIK surgery. We will give you complete instructions regarding eye drops and medications to use to help the healing and visual recovery process.
YOU NEED TO FOLLOW THESE INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY
It is important that require for all scheduled follow-up visits to check the healing process, regardless of how well you think you are doing. Most LASIK patients at South Jersey Eye Physicians are able to pass the New Jersey Motor Vehicles Eye Test (NJMVT) without eyeglasses or contacts within a day or so after their LASIK Surgery.
You should feel free to discuss any questions or thoughts about LASIK or any corneal laser eye surgery with our surgeons or the staff. Our staff is available to answer any questions or to address any needs you may have regarding Laser Vision Correction. We will be pleased to spend whatever time is necessary to review any information about the LASIK procedure, what to expect on LASIK surgery day, follow-up care, fees and affordable “no money down” easy monthly payment plans that will fit into your budget.
About PRK Eye Surgery
For some patients PRK (Photorefractive Keratectomy) is the preferred type of Laser Eye Surgery. PRK has been performed in the United States since 1995 and as such has withstood the test of time in terms of safety, efficacy and predictability. The PRK procedure is somewhat similar to LASIK in that a laser is used to reshape the cornea in order to correct your vision. The key difference between PRK and LASIK is that no “flap” is created during PRK. Instead, the laser is used to produce your optical correction by reshaping the outermost surface of the cornea, rather than under a flap, as in LASIK. PRK requires the removal of a thin layer of the corneal epithelium, which may produce varying degrees of temporary discomfort for up to a few days after your treatment. In general, PRK provides a slower visual recovery than LASIK.
With PRK, we will often prescribe additional medications and a thin, soft bandage contact lens to make you more comfortable for a few days after your treatment. PRK has a distinct place for some patients. PRK is recommended for those patients:
- Whose corneas are too thin to have LASIK safely
- Whose corneas display evidence of scarring from infection or trauma
- Who are in certain military assignments or roles and who are active or reserve military personnel.
You should feel free to discuss any fears, concerns, questions or thoughts about Laser Eye Surgery procedures for Laser Vision Correction with your eye doctor or the staff. Our staff is available to answer any questions or to address any needs you may have regarding Laser Vision Correction at South Jersey Eye Physicians, and we will be pleased to spend whatever time is necessary to review any information about the LASIK or PRK procedures, what to expect on surgery day, follow-up care, fees and affordable “no money down” easy monthly payment plans that will fit into your budget.
Clear Lens Exchange
Are you a Clear Lens Exchange Candidate?
Clear Lens Exchange is typically recommended for individuals experiencing presbyopia or extreme farsightedness (hyperopia), for whom LASIK or PRK are generally not suitable. If you have presbyopia and moderate to severe hyperopia, a clear lens exchange may be the only viable option for clear vision and nominal reliance on glasses following your refractive surgery. Clear lens exchange surgery also can correct myopia (nearsightedness), but generally it is not recommended when LASIK or PRK are available as suitable options.
Clear Lens Exchange – Is it Cataract Surgery?
Not Exactly. The procedure for refractive lens exchange is virtually identical to cataract surgery, except for the fact that the lens being replaced remains clear, rather than a cloudy lens that results due to cataract formation. As in cataract surgery, three types of IOLs are available to replace your natural lens, depending on your vision needs and the health of your eyes. They are:
- Monofocal Lens Implants which are the most basic type of lens implant and only correct distance vision and not arms-length or close reading vision.
- Toric Lens Implants for those patients with astigmatism to help them see clearly at distance without glasses.
- Presbyopia Correcting Lens Implants such as the AcrySof® IQ PanOptix™ Trifocal Lens Implant, the TECNIS Symfony and TECNIS Synergy™ Lens Implants (IOL) which correct distance vision, as well as a range of arms-length vision and close reading vision for most patients.
Refractive Lens Exchange: Before, During & After the Procedure
A Clear Lens Exchange takes approximately 10-15 minutes and is performed on an outpatient basis in our onsite surgical facility, the Surgical Center at South Jersey Eye Physicians. Each eye is done separately, usually one to two weeks apart. Numbing anesthetic drops are used during a clear lens exchange, so there is typically no discomfort. Most people report immediate vision improvement after surgery. The final outcome of your Clear Lens Exchange may take several weeks, and you may notice some vision disturbances such as blurry vision, halos and glare, or a ” scratchy” sensation early on as your eyes heal. You should be able to return to work and resume driving within a few days following your surgery, dependent on the instructions from your eye surgeon. In case you were wondering, you won’t feel the IOL in your eye. Additionally, since the IOL is situated inside your eye, rather than on the surface like a contact lens, it is not noticeable to people looking at you casually nor visible to the naked eye. The Clear Lens Exchange provides a permanent replacement for your natural lens and is designed to last the remainder of your life. Since IOLs are not affected by age-related changes, there is a significantly reduced risk of regression, a loss of corrective effect or deterioration of vision, over time. Clear lens replacement surgery is more invasive than laser-based refractive surgery such as LASIK and PRK and comes with slightly more risk. However, sight-threatening complications are rare, and most complications can be treated successfully with medication or additional procedures. The higher risks associated with a clear lens exchange may be an acceptable trade-off if you have a severe refractive error and a strong desire to be less dependent on eyeglasses, contact lenses and/or reading glasses.