LASIK Eye Exams

LASIK Eye Exams

A LASIK eye exam and consultation is an important part of helping to make the decision as to whether LASIK or any type of Laser Eye Surgery for vision correction is a good option for correcting nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism so that you can see clearly at distance without eyeglasses or contact lenses. In order to determine whether you are a good LASIK candidate and be confident that you will get the best possible results as part of your consultation, we need to perform a routine eye health and vision exam as well as a number of other specialized tests.

Review of Health & Eye History

Your overall health and any history of eye problems, conditions or diseases are important factors. While most health problems and treatments do not have too much impact on the success of LASIK, some in fact can be problematic. Patients who have connective tissue diseases, collagen vascular disease, autoimmune diseases or immunodeficiency conditions may be poor candidates. In fact depending on whether these conditions are active, these may be an absolute reason why you simply cannot have LASIK or any type of Laser Eye Surgery for vision correction. This would include certain types of Rheumatoid Arthritis and Lupus Erythematosis. On the other hand, with immunodeficiency conditions, such as HIV, there may only be a need for caution rather than the condition being an absolute contraindication. So, be sure to share your complete medical history and health status at your LASIK exam and consultation.

Likewise, if you have been treated for any eye infections, especially corneal infections such as Herpes Simplex or Herpes Zoster Keratitis, or even have had persistent or recurrent cold sores around your mouth, please be sure to share this at your consultation.

Be sure to tell us about any medications you are taking, or have recently taken as they can affect healing and the health of your tear film. Include over the counter, as well as prescribed medication, and even include supplements you take for any reason.

Review of the Lifestyle Needs Assessment & Expectations

It is important that you identify and share with the LASIK surgeon and the staff, the lifestyle reasons why you wish to have LASIK, or any type of Laser Eye Surgery. In particular, what is it about your glasses or contact lenses that you don’t like? If you didn’t have to wear glasses or contacts for seeing clearly at distance, what kinds of things would you be able to do more comfortably, conveniently, safely?  By sharing these thoughts at your LASIK exam and consultation, it will be possible to help you achieve your vision correction goals.

The LASIK Eye Exam Tests

The LASIK eye exam will include measuring your visual acuity-how well you see with and without your glasses and contacts. A very careful and thorough slit lamp exam will be performed and the cornea examined in great detail under high magnification. A refraction to determine your optical prescription will be performed in the natural focusing state and after eye drops have been instilled-called a cycloplegic refraction-to see if there is any residual focusing affect that changes your prescription. During the slit lamp exam, the quantity and quality of your tears will be carefully evaluated as the function of the tears is to help with corneal healing and visual recovery after LASIK. Three important tests we will perform are pachymetry to measure the corneal thickness, aberrometry to measure the aberrations and microscopic optical distortions in your prescription, and corneal topography to further investigate the shape, contour and integrity of your cornea.

Once these tests have been performed at your LASIK exam and consultation, your LASIK surgeon will be able to help you make a sound decision as to whether LASIK or any other type of Laser Eye Surgery is good choice for you!