Let’s not try to portray too negative an image of laser eye surgery. Undoubtedly, you will be going in with eyes wide open and aware of the risks involved and by the time you are in the operating chair, you will have weighed up all the pros and cons and will be happy with your decision. Here are some of the associated risks which could occur:
- vision loss
- visual symptoms
- regular follow ups as a result of under or over treatment
- dry eyes
- diminishing results
Let’s examine the risks in a little more detail. Always keep in mind the success of this procedure is very high but the following can occur in some instances.
Under or over treatment is an interesting side effect and this is usually a frequent occurrence. What this means is perfect vision without the aid of visual aids only occurs in a small percentage of patients. Further post operative treatment may be required while if a patient wore glasses before the surgery, there is a strong chance they will still be required to wear them after the procedure.
Visual problems such as loss of vision and symptoms such double vision and halo effects are serious side effects which are not too common. However, they still can occur. Vision loss of some description is a real blow as it usually cannot be reversed with further surgery.
Many patients will go in with high expectations given the feedback they received and the excellent success record of laser eye surgery but this in itself is a risk. Keep your expectations at a realistic level and discuss with your surgeon exactly what you could reasonably expect from the surgery.
Dry eyes and diminished results are two more risks to consider. Dry eye syndrome is a result of the eye being unable to produce moistness and this can be an extremely uncomfortable time for the patient. Results diminishing over time is a factor particularly for those with far sighted vision.
There may come a time when laser eye surgery risk is non existent given the rapid rate in which technology is advancing. Right now though, the risk is always there and longer term side effects are still a little unclear. However, the benefits most patients have experienced through this type of procedure during the past ten years has been remarkable and remember, if you are deemed an eligible candidate for eye surgery, the final decision is always in your lap to make.