Laser eye surgery can correct focus-related vision problems.

Surgeons at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center Havener Eye Institute can treat many eye conditions, including focus-related problems. Vision can become blurry when the cornea, the clear front part of the eye, is shaped abnormally and light doesn't bend, or refract, properly as it reaches the retina in back of the eye. Such problems are called refractive errors. They can include:

  • Nearsightedness (myopia) where distant images seem blurry
  • Farsightedness (hyperopia) where close-up images seem blurry
  • Astigmatism (either close-up or distant blurred vision)
  • In some cases, laser surgery for refractive errors may reduce or eliminate the need for eyeglasses or contact lenses.

About LASIK

Laser In-Situ Keratomileusis, or LASIK, is a type of refractive eye surgery that uses an ultraviolet device called an excimer laser to reshape the cornea. LASIK has one of the highest patient-satisfaction rates among medical procedures.

Ohio State’s surgeons use the most advanced technologies to diagnose corneal issues and perform surgical procedures. Our surgeons measure the optical distortions of the cornea and produce a map showing how light is distorted in your eye. This highlights individual imperfections and tailors laser settings for the best results, including improved nighttime vision.

View this introduction to the LASIK procedure, featuring the eye experts at Ohio State’s Havener Eye Institute.

Frequently Asked Questions about LASIK

Frequently Asked Questions about LASIK

Can LASIK eliminate my need for reading glasses?

As the natural lens inside the eye ages, it can lead to decreased near vision (presbyopia). This causes the need for reading glasses. LASIK does not correct presbyopia, however, monovision is a possible treatment option. Discuss monovision with your physician.

How do I begin the LASIK process?

Schedule your free LASIK consultation with the eye care experts at Ohio State’s Havener Eye Institute. We’ll perform a series of sophisticated and painless tests to determine the unique shape of your eye. This allows us to personalize your procedure to microscopic precision.

How do I prepare for my LASIK procedure?

Most refractive eye surgeries are performed on an outpatient basis. They usually last less than an hour. Your surgeon will provide specific directions, but here are some steps typically required before this procedure:
  • Arrange for someone to drop you off and pick you up after surgery
  • Do not wear contact lenses for a period of time before surgery, to prevent any changes in the cornea
  • Do not wear eye make-up for a couple of days before surgery

How does the LASIK surgery begin?

Your office visit will take 60 to 90 minutes. A low dose anti-anxiety oral medication may be administered while you’re in the office to help you relax. You’ll receive medicated eye drops that will help make you comfortable during treatment. During the procedure, it is common to experience hazy vision and flashing lights. The entire treatment will take only 15 minutes for both eyes.

Is LASIK right for me?

You may be a good candidate for LASIK if you are:

  • At least 18 years of age
  • In good general health
  • Not pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Not experiencing major changes to prescriptions for glasses or contacts (in the past year)
  • Free of eye diseases that affect vision or healing
You can schedule a free consultation with a Havener Eye Institute surgeon. He or she will discuss other factors that could affect your candidacy. Serious complications from LASIK are quite rare. However, you should consider and discuss risks and potential side effects.

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What are the advantages of all-laser LASIK versus a standard LASIK procedure?

At Ohio State’s Havener Eye Institute, we perform state-of-the-art, blade-free, all-laser LASIK for the best vision outcomes. We use current technologies, such as the IntraLase laser and the Wavelight Allegretto Wave laser, which allow our surgeons to serve a wide variety of patient needs. 

The IntraLase laser creates a much thinner corneal flap as compared to a flap created with a microkeratome (hand-held blade). It also lowers the rate of corneal flap complications. Patients who were previously told their corneas were too thin for LASIK, may now be eligible for the treatment. 

The WaveLight laser customizes every treatment to the patient’s individual prescription and cornea. This personalized treatment enhances the quality of vision. It also addresses any distortions that may affect night vision. Recent studies indicate that with wavefront-optimized technology, patients are more likely to achieve 20/20 vision.

What are the benefits of LASIK?

LASIK can help correct vision problems, such as nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism of varying degrees. For most candidates, it involves little pain and a rapid recovery. Other benefits of LASIK surgery include:

  • The surgery can be repeated to further correct vision
  • Eyes stabilize within three months after surgery
  • Eyes are not structurally weakened
  • Surgery causes little or no scarring of the cornea
  • Postoperative care usually limited to using eye drops for a week after surgery

What are the potential side effects of LASIK?

Side effects may include:
  • Undercorrection
  • Overcorrection
  • Dry eye
  • Glare, halos and ghosting images
Other rare risks, such as infection, inflammation and corneal ectasia (thinning) are possible. Speak to your refractive surgeon if you have any questions or concerns.

What can expect immediately after my LASIK surgery?

After the procedure, your surgeon will examine your eyes and give you postoperative instructions. Your surgeon will place clear eye shields over your eyes. 

You will most likely notice improvement even though your vision is hazy. Expect three to four hours of significant eye-watering, scratchiness and light sensitivity. It is usually best if you are able to sleep through this time period. 

The following morning you will return for a postoperative check. Most patients are able to drive themselves to this appointment and vision is significantly improved. Glare, halos and dry eyes may be present, but will improve dramatically as your eyes heal. Your surgeon will discuss any precautions and postoperative care with you at this appointment.

What can I expect during my LASIK surgery?

Although each procedure varies slightly, in general, refractive eye surgery involves minimal discomfort. The eye is usually numbed with eye drops prior to surgery. While in surgery, you may also stay awake during the procedure. Your eye may be kept open with a device placed between your eyelids. Specific events that occur during surgery vary depending on the type performed.

What does the LASIK procedure involve?

A surgeon begins this procedure by creating a precise flap on the cornea, the clear outer part of the eye. This flap, which is about as thin as a human hair, allows the surgeon to reach the underlying corneal tissue. 

A cool, ultraviolet laser, which you can neither see nor feel, is then applied – typically for several seconds – to reshape the cornea. The surgeon then repositions the corneal flap. The entire procedure is completed within 15 to 20 minutes for both eyes.

What is recovery from the LASIK procedure like?

Recovery times vary depending on the surgery. They can last anywhere from several days to several months. Each individual may experience symptoms differently; however, the following are some common symptoms following eye surgery:
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Blurry vision
  • Minor discomfort
  • Dry eyes

Why should I choose Ohio State's Havener Eye Institute for my LASIK procedure?

Our highly skilled LASIK surgeons have performed refractive surgery on thousands of happy patients. We use advanced, all-laser technologies, which offer considerable advantages over traditional procedures.

Plus, our experts are backed by the resources, research, education, technology, teamwork and reputation of The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. We have a tireless dedication to patient safety, and our surgeons strive to give every patient first-class service and the highest-quality result.

Ohio State eye care specialists provide thorough consultation and support every step of the way. We are happy to answer any questions and look forward to meeting with you soon. 

Schedule an appointment with Ohio State’s eye care experts. Call 614-293-8116.

Amit Tandon, MD, an ophthalmologist at Ohio State's Havener Eye Institute, explains Ohio State's expertise in performing LASIK surgery.

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