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Nov 13

Is Lasik for Astigmatism now a viable option?

For years Lasik Surgery for Astigmatism was considered a pricey and risky procedure. However, with better training and equipment, those with this serious vision problem are now relieved to discover that Lasik, a type of refractive eye surgery, has been quite successful for certain Astigmatism patients, in addition to those suffering from myopia and hyperopia. To determine if you can be a candidate for Lasik for astigmatism, you need to know what kind of astigmatism you have and how serious it is and if Lasik refractive surgery is a good option or not.

The first order of business is to determine what astigmatism is and how this manifests itself. Normally, the curvature of the cornea is in the shape of a baseball while an eye with astigmatism has a football shaped cornea. The cornea of the astigmatic eye will therefore have two curves, one that is steep and one that is flat, resulting in the light entering the eye to converge at several different points. This results in conflicting messages being sent to the brain leading to blurry and distorted vision.

In cases such as these, with the astigmatism on the cornea, the Lasik surgery can be quite successful. The Lasik laser pulse laser pulses are precisely delivered to corneal tissue in the axis of the steeper curve. Through manipulating the sharper area of the curve of the cornea, the overall spherical shape is developed. This results in the eye to then be able to focus the light rays more precisely, resulting in clearer, crisper vision.

Lasik for astigmatism doesn’t work in all cases, however, which is why a complete and thorough eye exam is necessary. In fact, if you wear contacts, it is advised to take them or for several hours before your examination in order to have an accurate diagnosis. There are also conditions that will disqualify a patient from Lasik surgery. Those conditions include patients having too severe astigmatism, often occurring at the lens inside the eye; pregnant or nursing mothers, due to hormonal changes; thin corneas; large pupil size; corneal scarring; cataracts; glaucoma; retinal detachment; dry eyes; keratoconus; ocular herpes; and diabetic retinopathy. Certain medical conditions, will also disqualify a person such as having an autoimmune disease, diabetes, or being on certain medications. Various complications could arise should Lasik surgery be attempted and considering the amount of money (about $2,200) invested in this procedure, you would want the highest chance of success.

Lasik for astigmatism is a great option for many people, correcting vision to 20/20 in some cases, or at least 20/40, in about 90% of the cases. It is a simple procedure and many patients notice an improvement as soon as the next day with little to no discomfort. However, this procedure is not for everyone and a thorough examination is essential in order to determine if you are a good candidate so that the best possible results occur and the often $2,200 investment is well spent.

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