Ok, morning all –
I’ve taken a couple of days off from blogging as on Friday at around 1 pm I had laser eye surgery.
So – I’m less than 48 hours out from this, and I’ve missed the desire to write and so here I am – back to walk you through my journey in getting laser eye surgery.
Get strapped in – I don’t know how long this one will end up being.
What Is Laser Eye Surgery?
Laser eye surgery basically involves reshaping your cornea (i.e the front surface of your eye that you can see) so that you can focus better.
In my case, it’s about correcting my short-sightedness so I can get to 20/20 vision – which I’ve not had since my early 20s (if ever).
It can also correct long-sightedness and astigmatism (yes I had to Google these terms, well the 2nd one to completely understand what to write in this spot haha)
Why I Decided To Get Laser Eye Surgery
Well, I first became considerate of the idea whilst waiting to get my hair transplant in Turkey back on November 13th 2020.
I sat with Joe, another chap who was having his hair transplant – and who told me he got laser eye surgery a couple of years ago.
He said he was sick of wearing glasses/needing contacts – and so decided to have the surgery – and it was one of the best decisions he had ever made.
At that moment – I was queuing up to go through a 6-hour treatment for my hair that involved having my head torn open – so the prospect of getting laser eye surgery didn’t seem too crazy.
Also – glasses (which I was supposed to wear – but never did) – didn’t play much of a role in my life.
As I am not someone who ever drives (not since I was 22/23) – and the fact I was short-sighted (my sight is good at short distances) – my prescription glasses was something I’d done without for most of my adult life.
The rare occasions I’d need it or would benefit from it: sitting too far back in the cinema for my liking, seeing street signs in the distance when I was walking and the odd client presentation I watched on a big screen when I went to visit their offices – they just didn’t come up very much.
This will change in the future however when I do have children and then I need to drive to places. At that stage, my vision will become more important – and I’d need to wear glasses every time I drive.
So the idea of not wearing glasses really appealed to me.
With all of this in mind – I immediately fired off some questions to him (which I would later confirm through my own experiences of it):
Does laser eye surgery hurt?
Joe confirmed that laser eye surgery doesn’t hurt because they anaesthetise the eye – meaning they paralyse its feelings.
Not the emotional one’s – but rather the brain-eye connection such that you see and experience different sensations – but none of those sensations are a pain as such.
Moreso – it’s a case of various drops being placed into your eye, a green flashing light you need to keep your eye on throughout the procedure, as well as some pressure on your eye.
Is the pressure on your eye intense?
Nope, the pressure on your eye isn’t intense – it’s pretty manageable – so nothing you can’t handle. It’s a little bit like someone is – well – pressing your eye slightly.
I’d later discover it was much like when I had my face flat down pressed up against the operating chair during my hair transplant
How long does laser eye surgery last?
Surprisingly short – the whole surgery takes no more than 5-10 minutes itself. You actually spend more time in the waiting room and going through an explanation of what the procedure involves. The procedure itself – for both eyes – is surprisingly quick.
Are you awake during laser eye surgery?
Joe smiled and said ‘yep’ you’re awake the whole time – how else are they going to keep your eyes open unless they force them open (they kind of do that anyway as I’d later discover)
But yes – you would be awake during the entire surgery and be made fully aware of what was going on as it was going on.
How is your eyesight a few years after laser eye surgery?
Joe said his eyesight was still 20/20 several years later – and he was really pleased that he had got it done
Any long-term side effects of getting laser eye surgery?
In his case, he said no – he’d made a full recovery, and had no side effects whatsoever. But they did a lot of tests on your eye, general health as well as taking a history before you had surgery to determine whether you are a good candidate for it.
What laser eye surgery clinic did you go with?
I forget the name of the clinic. But what I do remember was that the price was £6,000 – the surgeon who did Joe’s eyes had done several celebrities – and that before the surgery he had an opportunity to talk to the surgeon and ask all of his questions.
Leading up to it, he’d done a lot of research and ended up going to a place on Harley Street (also a place where I made a visit) and recommended it as a place worth checking out.
At this point – I felt I got enough information from Joe to make the idea of getting laser eye surgery something I thought it made sense to get done.
I realised that my sisters had had laser eye surgery in their 20s – and both said it had made a world of difference to their lives – so that was more personal proof I had that the process worked.
What Is Nearsightedness (Myopia)
So this is the type of vision I have – which is pretty common from anecdotal experience. Basically, it means I see things up close pretty well – and that I struggle with things further away – these get blurry.
You probably know it the same as I do – being short-sighted.
It’s something I’ve had since my 20s – or at least I recall being diagnosed than when I began to struggle to read things that were far away.
It’s never been something that’s overtaken my day-to-day life but as I mentioned – it would lead to an overall improvement so the cost relative to the return seemed too great to ignore.
Choosing a laser eye surgery clinic
Joe had had his surgery a couple of years back, and for my sisters, it had been 4 and 10 years. Unlike with my hair transplant – where I had a reference from someone who had the treatment in the last few months – this wasn’t the same.
I wasn’t confident how similar these company processes were in the last couple of years and whether the personnel changed.
Also, knowing that Joe had paid around £6,000, I wondered whether there was better value money for deals out there.
Whilst much of these surgeries were sold on the basis of the quality and experience of the surgeon – I’d figure all of these guys were really experienced – and that therefore the quality of the result would be indistinguishable in the end.
Regardless I started my googling, with laser eye surgeries near me, as well as laser eye surgeries in London, and the journey began.
Different Types Of Laser Eye Surgery
So as I’d discover – once I started googling – is that there are three main types of laser eye surgery to consider – LASIK, SMILE and surface laser eye treatments.
I’d go on to be told more about the different types of surgery once I got into the two clinics I would go and see – but I think they were both surprised about how little I knew about each of them.
I got the distinct sense that people come in and tend to be better researched than I am – and as I think about YOU reading this blog post – it strikes me that – I should probably walk you through the different types of surgery I was told about lol.
So here we go:
What is Lasik Eye Surgery?
So this is the most common surgery that people end up getting to get them off contact lenses or (in my case) glasses.
What does Lasik stand for?
It stands for Laser-assisted in situ keratomileuses.
What does keratomileusis mean?
The keratomileusis bit (I had to Google this) is the surgical reshaping of the cornea which is carried out in order to correct refractive errors.
What does in-situ?
This means ‘on-site’. It’s a Latin phrase that has the literal translation of ‘on-site’ or ‘in position’.
What this means collectively is that it refers to the reshaping of the cornea is done ‘on-site’ – i.e at the ophthalmology clinic that you do all of these tests in.
What are the refractive errors of the eye?
Basically, this means the shape of your eye is not correctly bending the light that comes into it – thus resulting in a blurred image.
This actually, is what I have right now (my optician told me my eyesight might get better, then be blurry, then get better again so I’m not worried…yet lol).
But when you hear about being ‘short-sighted (many younger people are), or ‘long-sighted’ etc – these are all refractive errors – the technical terms for which are:
Myopia (nearsightedness) – what you have if you’re better at seeing things close up.
Hyperopia (farsightedness) – the opposite lol.
Then it starts to get more interesting with presbyopia (the loss of near or close vision with age) and astigmatism.
What is astigmatism?
This is when the shape of your eye(s) is more like a rugby ball than a football – and can screw with your vision of course
So Lasik can correct (potentially) most of these things (not the age issues I guess…I’m not sure about astigmatism).
Lasik Eye Surgery Procedure
So during this type of surgery, there’s a cutting laser (you’ll actually see and smell your eyes being slightly burned which is not a pleasant sensation at all lol) that is used for all of 6 up to 54 seconds depending upon the type of laser used – to adjust your vision.
There’s dome-shaped clear tissue at the front of your eye of which the shape is adjusted basically so that light bends slightly differently when it comes into your eye to adjust for the current…well incorrect bend.
And there’s a flap that the ophthalmologist will create – a tiny one at the front of your eye – this will then be lifted up, so the cornea can be reshaped underneath.
The flap is then rolled back on because it’s this that forms a protective barrier whilst your eye/cornea underneath it heals.
Other Types Of Laser Surgery
SMILE Laser Eye Surgery – The New Kid On The Block
So from my googling – because when I visited Accuvision and the Focus Clinic and spoke to a third – they all seemed to be using Lasik – SMILE seems to be ‘more advanced’.
It apparently was introduced into the eye surgery world in 2011 (so really recently).
As far as I understand (from my Googling lol) – here’s what it involves:
First of all is stands for small incision lenticule extraction (which definitely doesn’t make me any clearer on what’s involved).
From the impression I have – it’s ‘minimally invasive’ as compared to the other surgeries.
The other ones involve creating a flap – which requires a knife for it to be made. And this is manually done.
With ReLEx SMILE (apparently that’s the full name) – the size of the full they make in the cornea is 2 mm instead of 20 millimetres – and the recovery time is quicker I’d imagine because there’s less to heal.
With no blade involved, it’s just a laser.
This ISN’T the surgery I had – as it was never offered to me – and now I’m wondering why lol – because on PAPER it sounds better than the other surgeries.
I suspect it’s down to surgical experience, however – as because it’s still very new – there’s probably only a limited number of surgeons who offer this.
One of the common complaints of those people who live with Dry eyes – a common issue that can prohibit surgery – is that laser eye surgery makes it even worse.
Apparently with SMILE that’s not an issue anymore because there’s almost no damage to the cornea – you’re good to go.
So I’d recommend looking this one up before you decide what to go with – I’ll know I’ll be finding out why I wasn’t offered this – I’m sure it’s to do with the technology they have in the clinic or something like that.
PRK/Lasek Eye Surgery
So this is the most old school type of surgery – and the difference with this is that rather than creating a flap to heal – the flap is entirely removed.
PRK stands for Photo-Refractive Keratectomy and Lasek for Laser-Assisted Subepithelial Keratomileusis. If you’re anything like me – that makes you no closer to understanding what they do.
But it’s important we know what the acronym stands for because it comforts us somehow lol.
With both of these types of procedures – the fundamental difference is that they’re more invasive than Lasik or SMILE and the eye docs are only going to use them if there’s some medical reason to do so.
Broad strokes I presume this could mean if you have some scar tissue if you have a thin cornea and any other range of issues – it may mean the surgeons go to work on you using this procedure instead.
Recovery time is longer from what I read – but the ultimate end result is the same (which is solid)
For more information on this – I’ll leave it for you to check out 😛
For the majority of people that are looking to get eye surgery done, however – LASEK and SMILE seem solid.
My Journey With Focus Clinic [Review]
So I’d ultimately end up checking out the reviews and write-ups of several places, and just decided well – this surgery looked really good.
A slick website, lots of qualifications, lots of amazing reviews – interestingly not a SINGLE bad one (which seemed a little bit off for a company that had over 10 years in the business) – but looked good enough to warrant a visit.
In the end what happened was that I registered my details with 4 maybe 5 clinics, spoke to 3 of them and would end up visiting 2 in person before I made a final decision.
Strawberry, my partner suggested I thoroughly research the options that were available to me before I decide on which clinic to go with – and that price should be no issue.
Heading into the Focus Clinic was more of an amazing education than anything else then.
Getting My Lenses Prescription And Medical History
Before I headed into the clinic, the first thing that happened was a phone call with one of their opticians (I think).
What they did was begin by asking me for my prescription.
As I had glasses that I never wore – I had no clue what the prescription was. What impressed me about this guy though was that he simply asked if I could remember where I’d had my most recent eyesight test (a Specsavers).
Upon telling him, and identifying which branch I’d had the test done in – he said he’d simply give them a ring to find out what my prescription was – so no problem at all.
Outside of this, he asked questions about my family’s medical history – and most specifically related to any history of eye issues, or anything blood-related.
Thankfully there are none – and so I was all set to go on in and proceed to phase two of the Laser Eye surgery suitability tests
Tests You Need To Pass Before Undergoing Lasik Eye Surgery
So – I’m not sure at all of the ‘fail rate’ associated with getting laser eye surgery but there’s definitely a bunch of considerations before you go ahead and get the surgery done:
These include (but are probably not limited to) the:
- Examination of the corneal composition
- It’s shape and thickness
- The optics of the eyes
- Tear production
- Intraocular pressure
- Your pupil size
- The lubrication of the eyes and refraction
I’m not going to pretend I know in depth what each of these is – but I did do a little bit of research into each of them so you can get to grips with them
Corneal Pachymetry Test
From my understanding, this is one of the central tests when it comes to understanding if you’re suitable for LASIK eye surgery
So this is a simple and painless procedure to ultimately measure the thickness of your cornea.
A probe called a pachymeter is placed in front of the eye (i.e the cornea) to measure the thickness.
Apparently, normal, central corneal thickness is between 540 and 560 microns (or micrometres).
Anything above that is a thick cornea – and anything above 600 is basically out of this world.
Why Is Corneal Thickness Important To Lasik?
This was a question I actually asked – and it turns out that the thicker cornea you have – the more the ophthalmologist has to work with when creating the flap
So this is a test that’s computerized and they’ll go on ahead and take their measurements to be sure that you’ve got enough cornea to play with once they get you into surgery.
If you don’t have enough (since they’re going to be slicing into it) – it can apparently lead to keratoconus – which is the outward bulging of the eye – and no one wants that 😛
The Shape Of The Eye
This is important and is something that is checked out to make sure there aren’t any weird abnormalities. Think of it as a little bit like a house survey – to make sure that everything is in sound and working order.
A good example is my partner Strawberry who has an irregularly shaped eye that’s been throwing docs off for ages because of the shape it.
So getting this looked at is a part of the process.
Cycloplegic Eye Drops [Dilated Exam]
This is the eye drop you’ll get that paralyses (for a couple of hours) the ciliary body which changes the size of the pupil and shape of the lens.
This is used to test the true ‘prescription’ of your eye as it allows the optician to test your raw vision.
You basically can’t focus on anything close up at all – so then the optician can measure the extent of your refractive error.
The reason this happens is that we’re squinting all of the time when we’re trying to focus on stuff (well at least some of us moi!) – and when you take this out of the occasion it’s then possible to get an accurate prescription of your actual eyesight.
This will then impact what settings they need to put the laser on when it comes to the op!
Looks like there are short-acting and long-acting cycloplegic eye drops and you’ll be given the shorter kind which means you end up staying blurry for several hours before things go back to normal again.
I remember walking out of the eye clinic after my eyesight test and you can still wander around – just make sure you don’t have any work to do that involves focusing…
Because you won’t be able to do it lol.
Intraocular Pressure Test
This is when they use a tonometer to get a look at the pressure inside your eye. Eye pressure is measured in millimetres of mercury (mm Hg), with normal pressure ranging from 10-21 mm Hg.
If you have abnormally high pressure – something they measure via tonometry when they plonk your head into a device they call the slit lamp and put some painkilling medication inside your eye they then give it a poke to measure the pressure.
ALTHOUGH – now I’ve been googling this I assumed it was one of the tests I had – but looking at the machine they use – maybe it’s not lol.
Anyway – basically it’s a test for glaucoma – which is an eye condition that damages the optic nerve (the leading cause of blindness for people over 60).
This is one of the reasons they will ask if there’s any history of glaucoma.
From what I understand – if you do have slightly higher pressure than normal – you can still have laser eye surgery – as long as it’s under control.
Tear Function Test
It seems like this one was multiple names – the Schirmer test, the dry eyes test…(or rather multiple tests)
Basically, there is a range of different tests that an optician can use to look at your tear function and establish how much dry eyes will be a problem for you.
Dry eyes when it comes to Lasik seems like a big one.
If dry eyes are a problem you have (my sisters have it) – then it’s something you’d need to talk to your optician about to see if you can have the surgery and all.
A buddy of mine said he has bad dry eyes so this type of surgery wouldn’t really work so well for him.
Upon googling there seems to be loads of reasons for dry eyes:
So I’m not going to get into ‘figuring out’ what causes it specifically as it seems to vast.
So yeh – speak to your optometrist.
Who is NOT suitable for laser eye surgery?
I guess I should do a short section on this for those who are considering the surgery and want to understand whether this is something for you or not –
Your eye prescription is unstable
Your eyeball should stop growing between 18-21 – and as you grow up it means your prescription (should you need glasses) will chop and change over the years.
By the time you’ve finished ‘growing’ – your eyeballs should do the same thing – however – for some people there eyeballs haven’t finished growing yet.
What this means is that to ultimately qualify for laser eye surgery you need to have a stable prescription otherwise it more than likely isn’t happening.
It also explains why I was asked when I had my last eye test by Activision.
Your cornea is too thin or it’s irregular in some way
We discussed corneal thickness before – and this is important to an ophthalmologist’s ability to cut into your eye. Laser surgery is fundamentally about a slight reshape of the cornea for light refraction to be accurate.
For this to happen the cornea needs a certain thickness – so of course, it means there’s a finite limit to how much thinning can be done (the ultimate consequence of the reshape)
Your eye prescription is outside the safe range of treatment
Apparently (in case you know your subscription lol – I didn’t) – for myopia i.e shortsightedness – the safe limit is roughly -8 to -10 dioptres. For hypermetropia (long-sightedness) the safe limit is apparently +4 to +6 dioptres.
You’ll find out about all of this when you go in anyway
You have poor eye health
It was interesting to look into this one – it made me thankful that I (and I’m sure you also) have healthy eyes.
But here’s a range of (at least in the eye world) that would cause complications if you’re thinking about getting your eyes zapped:
- Age-related macular degeneration (this is the loss of your central vision) which usually starts in your 50s/60s (exact causes unknown can be genetic, smoking, high blood pressure, weight issues) and means you struggle to recognize faces and see things close up
- Cataracts – This is that cloudy eye thing that is more common in developing countries (ageing or injury causes this one) – surgery can fix this
- Diabetic Retinopathy – a complication of being type 2 diabetic, in which high blood sugar levels damage the back of the high (stop eating sugar lol)
- Amblyopia – commonly known as lazy eye – often develops in childhood and it’s when your eye(s) fails to achieve normal acuity (i.e sharpness of vision)
- Strabismus – this is when the eyes don’t align when focussing upon an object – this one is where you get the childhood bullies calling a kid cross-eyed (which is already making me angry)
Woah – I learnt a lot from just giving these things a google!
You have poor overall health
So it’s not actually just your eyes that matter when it comes to getting laser.
If you have issues such as collagen vascular disease (which is when your immune system causes inflammation in your collagen and nearby joints – and is involved in several other diseases as well)…
Rheumatoid arthritis (a chronic inflammatory disease-causing inflammation in your joints)…
Lupus (another auto-immune disease) –
Then these are all problematic.
The simple way to think about all of this is that you need an immune system that’s in great working order so you can recover from laser eye surgery – and if that’s compromised it probably ain’t gonna happen.
You’re pregnant or nursing
This is an interesting one because whilst it’s pretty well known that during pregnancy, childbirth and nursing a woman can suffer from hormonal imbalances….
I didn’t know (until now) that these changes can also affect visual acuteness and apparently the recommendation is to wait for three months/menstrual cycles post-nursing before looking into laser eye surgery.
You’re Under 18
This one given number 3 is probably pretty obvious – you’re young, your prescription and eyes are still changing – so don’t laser anything just yet
You have severe dry eyes
Lasik involves the cutting of some of your corneal nerves which means (I guess) that your eyes will never 100% recover their sensory perception when it comes to knowing when it needs tears and when it doesn’t.
If this is an issue you have yourself already and therefore you’re constantly lubricating your eyes yourself…
Laser eye surgery probably isn’t a good fit – as it’ll only make it worse!
It’s like a trigger I guess
So there you have it – assuming you don’t have any of the above issues (to your knowledge) – crack on and keep reading 🙂
My Eyesight Immediately After Laser Eye Surgery
Once I came out of the clinic – the optometrist checks over your eyes to see how the surgery went – alongside having a quick look at your eyesight.
This is the acid test if you will – to assess how well the treatment went as well as to get a quick ‘peep’ at your vision.
What’s astonishing to see (pardon the pun) is that you can literally see better right after you get out of surgery – which is crazy.
Recovering From Lasik Eye Surgery
So right now – as I write this – I’m actually in the ‘recovery phase’.
I’ve been coming back to this and writing it in fits and starts.
And since today (day 6 of my recovery – I’ve got a blurry right eye – I thought it would make for a good opportunity to actually discuss it)
So over the first week of your recovery – your vision will be ‘up and down’.
One Eye Blurry After Lasik
Some people experience some level of blurriness or haziness for up to a month in some cases –
As the title connotes – this is exactly what I have at the moment – so I wanted to write up – how to cope and manage this:
The reasons for one eye potentially being blurry after Lasek i:
- The surface of your eye is still sensitive to pressure, of any kind
- It’s easy to irritate the surface of your eye which can partially slow down recovery
- You’ve also just had laser eye surgery – so there are different phases of the healing process
- Your eye or brain rather is still adjusting to the new shape of your cornea – so this can result in there being some blurriness
- If you overmedicate or under medicate (using the drops given by the clinic) then it can also irritate the eye
Today – I woke up (and right now as I write) – I’ve got some blurriness in my left eye – which is disconcerting for me.
There’s no pain, no issues on that front, and what I did (like 10 minutes ago) – called the Accuvision clinic.
As you can imagine – I needed some reassurance so I called in and had my actual optometrist pick up within 5 rings.
Outside of office hours – calls forward to one of their mobiles – and he asked:
How long has it been blurry?
I said I really only noticed it this morning
To which he responded – ‘ok sometimes when people sleep they might rest their face on one eye with their hands and also a radiator near the bed can also irritate it.
In my case, I think both of these things happened!
‘Ok well it’s probably just surface irritation of the eye – and within 24 hours it’s very likely to resolve itself. Just be sure to hydrate well and if your eye feels irritated to make sure you rest it appropriately. If it hasn’t resolved itself by this time tomorrow then just pop in anytime’.
Brilliant response to get from my optometrist – and something I wish to pass on to you – to be aware of post-surgery.
What To Expect After Lasik Eye Surgery During Recovery
Generally speaking – here are important considerations when it comes to your overall recovery in the first couple of weeks post Lasik:
Some level of pain and discomfort
This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone as you’ve just had lasers pointed at your eyes. Expect watery eyes, a slight stinging sensation and sensitivity to light for perhaps the first few days.
In my personal experience, this cleared up within those first few days of surgery.
So much like the above pretty much within 24-48 hours, my redness was gone. It might come back a couple of times if you sleep and place pressure on your or get something in your eye – but broadly speaking it should be gone pretty quickly
Difficulty Focusing At Times
This is something that I still encounter up to 3 weeks later. What has happened here is that depending upon whether or not you’re someone who actually wears their prescription glasses (I don’t) – you’ll have conditioned your eye muscles to work in certain conditions.
Often they will contract to try and achieve a better degree of focus.
In my case, I do this when I go to my mum’s place and I’m trying to watch television from further away and I’ve got so used to squinting that I don’t even realise I’m doing it.
This takes as long as it needs to unlearn.
Glare and Halos Surrounding Lights
Expect this to be an issue for perhaps the first few weeks as well. This was a peculiarity to me for the first two weeks I think.
I’d noticed the glare and halos and all whilst wandering around outside.
This has since disappeared less than a month in so it will likely fade for you as quickly as it did for me.
How Quick Can You Go Back To Normal Life After Surgery?
For The First 24 Hours After Lasik
You will have had protective shields or lenses placed over your eyes and will be wearing sunglasses most likely when you come out of surgery.
Make sure you keep your eyes closed as much as you can for the first 24 hours.
Find yourself an excellent audiobook and dig in, I say.
Also, you’ll need some assistance getting back home where you should be focussing upon rest and nothing else.
You’ll be given drops to take every couple of hours also.
For The First 24-72 Hours After Lasik
You should see improvement quite quickly and the sensitivity which will be soothed through time passing and the use of the antibiotic drops you’re given should do the trick.
You can open your eyes more and return (to a very limited degree) to normal life. Follow your ‘eye feeling’ however – and focus upon resting when your eyes tell you too as well as closing them when you feel you need to.
General Recovery Time After Lasik
From my personal experience – it’s just good to take it easy (i.e no exercise or make-up or anything that could irritate the eye) for the first two weeks.
If you work on a screen like me, then I’d say you can go back to this after 3-4 days and pretty much return to normal.
Assuming you don’t play a contact sport (e.g football, basketball, rugby or something or the other) than you can pretty much go back to normal exercise after 2-weeks.
If you swim or do contact sports I’d say give it a month.
The recommendations online are probably similar or slightly shorter than this.
I think the point is – is to not be in any rush to go back to sport or anything strenuous really quickly.
Focus on the recovery!
One Week Appointment After Surgery
So I’ve just come back from an appointment with my optometrist one week after having my laser eye surgery and wanted to share what happened with you.
The optometrist asks how it’s all going and I explained I’ve had some haziness – which he suggested is quite normal at the start.
He examined both eyes and said unsurprisingly there is some dryness that is causing the haziness.
The main thing is, is that the flap they made has sealed nicely and now it’s a case of working through the recovery.
A question I asked is ‘why do you get dry eyes after Lasik anyway?’
Turns out the reason is, to a degree unclear.
The common thought is that it’s caused by a lack of tears in your eyes as the corneal nerve heals. The nerve ordinarily relays information to your tear ducts about how many tears are needed.
The damage interferes with this signal – and for this reason, dry eyes become a symptom of this damage.
As your eyes go through the process of recovery you can expect this to be an issue for up to the first 6 months after surgery – and then something that resolves itself after 6-12 months.
You can probably tell this is partly Googling part asking the Optometrist
The main thing is that I’m a week out since having surgery so symptoms like this are normal and it can take months for things to get ‘back as they were.’
I feel reassured – and of course, time will tell!
Antibiotic Eye Drops After Lasik
So you’re immediately given blended eye drops (at least I was) once you roll out of surgery.
What I mean by this is one bottle of eye drops that contain antibiotics as well as steroid eye drops.
The antibiotics I guess are self-explanatory in that you need they’re there to prevent infection – and then the steroids are there to minimise inflammation.
You’re meant to take them on the first day after surgery every 2 hours I think, then the day after every 4 hours and then it goes to 4x per day.
At the end of the first week, my recovery seemed textbook enough that they took me off these drops.
This was also the case because I was getting dry eyes and the optician said ‘the eye drops now are probably not doing you any favours.’
So once a week had elapsed I was switched to:
Hypromellose (0.3%) Eye Drops 1 Week After Lasik
Also known as artificial tears – they’re used to free me of dryness and soreness that can be caused by the reduction of tears that you tend to have post-surgery.
They’re there to keep the eye hydrated (i.e moist) and I’ve been told to use them up to 4 times per day.
I think I’ll call in to confirm but I think the rule of thumb is to go based upon how my eyes feel – so if I feel like my eyes are dry – use them – and if I don’t feel like that…then don’t use them.
And right now minus the mornings, I don’t feel like I need them too much thankfully.
One Month After Laser Eye Surgery
Well, today is the 2nd of March so I had my laser eye surgery pretty much 27 days ago more or less.
What a journey it’s been getting to this point.
Crazy to think that back in November when I got my hair transplant I first found out about the world of laser eye surgery and all it entails.
And now less than 3-months later I’ve had my own treatment.
So, right now the things that still bug me are:
- When mobile phones are very close up I still struggle with focus. I need to squint my eyes a lot more because now my eyes have been corrected I don’t see as easily as I do close up – with all of that being said I see fine haha – I think my eyes are just still figuring out what to do when objects are close up
- Very occasionally – (maybe once a day) my eyes will feel a little sore or dry – this is soon fixed with the lubricating eye drops
And actually, that’s it.
I feel like I’m close to a full recovery and I have my clinic appointment this weekend to get a check-up and find out how my 1-month recovery has been – but I’m confident they’ll tell me I’ve made a textbook recovery.
Can I repeat LASIK surgery after 10 years?
This was actually a question I asked when I went for a checkup – and there are several considerations here:
If your surgery (for some strange reason) doesn’t go to plan the first time – your refractive errors can be corrected.
However – here’s something that I didn’t consider that happens as you age…
Whilst LASIK can correct your vision through your 20s/30s and even into your 40s – your eyes will still naturally deteriorate over time.
So it’s the case in your mid-40s I’m told that the shape of your eyes begins to change again due to the natural ageing process.
It might also be the case that if you got your surgery in your mid-20s, that perhaps into your mid-30s you need something corrected again because of changes or an injury you sustain yourself (who knows – although this I imagine would complicate things).
Regardless, during your mid-40s you begin to lose your ability to focus when things are near (I feel like maybe I have this now lol). This is called presbyopia and this occurs because the lens inside the eye becomes less flexible.
It’s this flexibility that allows you to focus on things that are close/far away.
Most surgeons then, if you need treatment again (maybe you developed glaucoma or cataracts) will create another flap in your eye(s) (assuming 5-10 years have passed) – and you’ll go through the same treatment again.
So – in my case having got the procedure done at 34 – it might be when I’m 44 (or slightly sooner) that my vision will begin to change again and I might look at getting more surgery.
Apparently one of the things you can do if you become long-sighted is that the surgeon can correct just one eye so you’re short-sighted in one eye and long-sighted in the other.
Apparently then it’s the brain that does the rest of the work.
Well – it must work because it was impressive to see that my operating surgeon carried out my surgery (at 58 years old) – with no glasses whatsoever 😛
We’ve come to the end of our laser eye surgery journey together.
I feel like I’ve become a tiny bit of an expert through putting this blog together and walking you through much of what you can expert from getting Lasik like myself.
It’s definitely been an exciting journey for me and I almost wish I knew about this a decade earlier (which of course I did because two of my sisters had laser eye surgery) – but better late than never.
And I hope that you give such a journey some consideration as you think about what you can see, what you can’t see and how much it does for you to have a surgery such as this.
It’s still weird to just be able to see much more clearly :p