Technological developments that have occurred in the medical field have enable some of the most complicated diseases and illnesses to be diagnosed at an early stage and therefore making it possible for patients to receive effective treatment. The development of laser medicine in particular has brought with it unimagined benefits. Various types of laser designs are presently available, including gas lasers, free electron lasers, fiber lasers, dye lasers, excimer lasers and diode lasers amongst others. One area that has benefited greatly with the development of laser medicine is in ophthalmology. You are no longer confined to use your contact lenses for the rest of your life. You can opt to receive laser treatment for eyes and actually do away with your lenses.
Two type of laser treatment for eyes are available:
- LASIK – LASIK is an acronym for laser in situ keratomileusis, a type of laser treatment for eyes. The procedure involves the use of a highly specialized laser to correct any refractive error(s) under your eyes. The procedure literally alters the shape of your cornea. With LASIK treatment, the need to use glasses is eliminated and you can use your naked eyes after healing. This procedure is very effective inn treating myopia (short sight), hyperopia (long sight) and astigmatism (blurred vision).
- PPK – PPK is the acronym for photorefractive keratectomy. This is the other type of laser treatment for eyes that is effective in treating mild to moderate short sight, long sight and astigmatism. Unlike LASIK laser treatment, PPK laser treatment is not invasive. The procedure involves the use of a laser to clear the front part of your eyes to make it possible for light to travel through properly into your retina, which is responsible for focus.
While the thought of receiving laser treatment may attract you, it is important to point that laser treatment for eyes is not for everyone and you may not qualify as a candidate for the treatment. Your ophthalmologist will definitely not recommend the same on consultation. He/she will establish various factors before any recommendation. Such include:
- Your ophthalmologist will have to confirm that you are either short sighted, long sighted or a mixture of both, which ends in blurred vision.
- Your vision must be measures to ensure that it falls within correction range. If you are short sighted, your measurement must not exceed -12.0 diopters and + 5.0 diopters if you are long sighted.
- You must be over 18 years.
- You have passed a comprehensive eye test prescribed by a qualified ophthalmologist.
- You overall health must be satisfactory to see you through the procedure without any problems.
- You have had no eye infection in the last 12 months.
- You must have been using glasses or contact lenses for the last two years continuously.
- Your cornea measurement must be at least 500 microns.
Like with any other treatment, laser eye treatment has side effects, which include discomfort, watering and irritation of the eyes. These however stop in 1-3 days after the treatment. Although treatment failure is possible that will see you revert to using your glasses, you regain your normal sight with positive treatment.
Your eyes are very fragile and it is important that you always care for them. In case your circumstance makes it necessary to consider eye laser treatment, note and ensure the following:
- Eye laser treatment is effective in eradicating both mild and serious eye problems (although expensive).
- Laser eye treatment is safe and does not have adverse side effects.
- Obtain adequate information from reading materials and your ophthalmologist before making a final decision on whether to go for the treatment or not.
- Ensure that the ophthalmologist you engage is properly qualified and certified to offer the treatment. You can obtain any information regarding any ophthalmologist from local associations.
- Consult your family members before making the final decision; you will need their support.
Seeking adequate and relevant information on any medical procedure you are bout to undergo is vital. For this reason, make it a point to obtain as much information as possible from your ophthalmologist. A qualified ophthalmologist will not rush you but educate you on the options available and the procedures you will undergo during your treatment.