Health

Modern laser vision correction - Pros and cons of the procedure, reviews

The pros and cons of laser vision correction today and will be discussed

There are a lot of people with problem vision on our planet - it is believed that every fifth of its inhabitants has or has once had short-sightedness or farsightedness. With the development of laser surgery, the correction of many problems in this area has become real. But such operations have certain contraindications. On the pros and cons of laser vision correction today and will be discussed.

Once the only way to correct vision was wearing glasses

Short story. First surgery

In the past, wearing glasses was the only way to correct vision. However, ophthalmologists have been hard at work looking for ways to fix it. In 1939, Japanese Sato suggested using small notches to change the curvature of the cornea.

However, due to frequent postoperative complications, this method has not taken root.
In 1949, Backer suggested that by changing the direction of the beam of light passing through the cornea, almost a 100% vision correction is possible. This doctor invented a special device for such operations - microkeratome. A great contribution to the further development of the method was introduced by N. Pureskin, who developed the idea and made a detailed description of the removal process of the upper transparent part of the cornea (stroma).

But scientists were able to carry out the first operation only after the invention of the excimer laser. Laser correction reached the qualitative level only after the keratotomy of the surgeon Svyatoslav Fedorov improved the methods of keratotomy. It was he who for the first time tried in practice more advanced microscopes and the most accurate "diamond" tools.

Strangely enough, the notorious IBM company made a real revolution in eye microsurgery, which used laser for the first time when assembling its computers and engraving chips. It turned out that the beam of light, its depth and zone of influence can be completely controlled. Now, thanks to the high accuracy of modern devices, the result of the operation has become absolutely predictable.

Due to the high accuracy of modern devices, the result of the operation has become absolutely predictable.

Tip! Laser correction of the cornea in advanced cases, unfortunately, is impossible. So, it is not carried out with myopia -15, hyperopia over +5 or astigmatism above 3.

Indications for laser correction

As you know, the lens of the eye has the shape of a lens, that is, it is convex on both sides. This form helps him to collect waves of light in a beam and then forward to the side of the retina. It is on the properties of the lens depends largely on the correct visual perception of the object. When changing its shape can be diagnosed:

  • myopia (myopia): stretching the eyeball, because of this shape, the lens transmits the light beam not to the retina, but to the area under it; the image becomes blurred;
  • farsightedness (hyperopia): the size of the eyeball is reduced, resulting in a focus not on the retina, but behind it; very often it develops due to age-related changes in the tissues, in which the curvature of the cornea decreases and the density of the lens increases;
  • astigmatism: in most people it is congenital and often accompanies hyperopia and myopia; due to changes in the shape of the cornea, lens and the eyeball itself, images become blurred; may be accompanied by headaches and pain in the eyes.

Myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism can be cured with laser vision correction

In all three cases, after surgery and correction of the shape of the lens, vision is restored.

Tip! With congenital or acquired changes in the retina (inner membrane of the eye), laser coagulation is first performed - electromagnetic stimulation of its tissues, which promotes rapid healing. In this case it will be possible to proceed to laser vision correction only after a fortnight.

Types of surgical vision correction and their cost

Unfortunately, insurance companies refer to a similar procedure as a cosmetic, therefore, according to the law, they are paid. Today, vision correction is carried out according to two methods:

  • photorefractive keratectomy (PRK): only the outer layer of the cornea is subject to correction, the inner elements of the eye are not affected, therefore the cost of such an operation is almost 2 times less - from $ 200 per eye;
  • Keratomileusis (Lasik): a promising direction in which, in order to gain access to the middle layer of the cornea, its upper layer is not cut off, but lifted in the form of a flap; damage in the middle layer is also minimal, since it is “evaporated” with a laser; vision after surgery is restored immediately; in case of myopia or hyperopia complicated by astigmatism, this method is recommended.

Which of the methods should be used in one case or another, the ophthalmologist determines after a full examination. It depends on the thickness of the cornea and the degree of change in the shape of the eyeball. Each of them, of course, has its pros and cons.

Insurance companies refer to a similar procedure as a cosmetic, therefore, according to the law, they are paid

The advantages of PRK include the possibility of holding it to patients with a thin cornea. However, the healing period, which is more painful than in the case of Lasik, stretches for 4-5 days.

Tip! If the vision continues to fall, it is necessary to first achieve stability and suspend this process, and only then proceed to laser correction.

Preparation for surgery

For a perfect result, the cornea must take its natural shape. That is why it is necessary to remove glasses or lenses 2-4 weeks before the operation and try not to strain your eyesight unnecessarily. People engaged in intense mental work or working at a computer, it is better to take a vacation and give rest to the eyes.

A few days before the operation, alcohol and the use of anti-inflammatory drugs and blood thinners are prohibited. At this time, it is not recommended to apply any cosmetics, especially in the eye area. Lotions, creams and even perfumes are also undesirable.

Before surgery, you should always sleep well. To avoid unnecessary disturbances, the doctor may prescribe mild sedatives.

A few days before the operation, alcohol and the use of anti-inflammatory drugs and blood thinners are prohibited.

Tip! Unfortunately, hyperopia is amenable to correction slightly worse than myopia. Only in 80% of patients with hyperopia, visual acuity improves to 0.5 and higher. With astigmatism, this percentage is 74-76%. In other cases, there are improvements, but less significant.

How is the operation?

Before the operation, the most complicated calculations are carried out with the help of special programs. For each particular case, depending on the ability of the lens to adapt to external changes and the shape of the eyeball, the residual corneal thickness and its optimal curvature are selected.

The laser vision correction itself does not last long - the surgeon needs only 10-15 minutes, of which most of the time is spent preparing for the operation. The time of exposure of the laser to one eye is only 1-1.5 minutes:

  • vision correction is performed under local anesthesia;
  • so that the eyeball does not move, it is fixed with a special dilator;
  • as the laser is able to automatically track even the slightest deviations of the eyeball, in case of its accidental displacement, the device immediately stops work;
  • at the first stage, the cornea is partially cut off and a flap with a thickness of 150 microns is formed from it;
  • after bending it for several tens of seconds, laser evaporation is carried out to give the middle part of the cornea a desired thickness and shape;
  • the separated upper part fits into place and is carefully smoothed, the seams in this case are not superimposed, since the fastening is carried out due to the negative pressure arising inside the cornea itself.

The operation is completely painless.

The operation is completely painless. And even during the short rehabilitation period, the patient does not feel any discomfort or pain. However, for the early recovery and prevention of complications in the postoperative period, you must follow some rules.

Postoperative period

Since minimal trauma is applied to the eyes during surgery, and local anesthesia does not cause any side effects, there is no need for hospitalization after laser vision correction. Home can be returned on the same day.

The first time after surgery, you will be recommended to wear a special eye patch, even while sleeping. To relieve the condition, only pain relievers prescribed by a doctor are taken. Since at this time too bright light can cause reels, it is better to be in darkened rooms for the first time. Sunglasses are recommended when going outside.

Not only to rub your eyes, but even to touch them with your hands should not be - after all, you can accidentally dislodge a cornea flap that has not yet taken root. All water procedures for the face at the time is also prohibited. Bath and sauna, as well as alcohol, will be banned for another month. At the same time, any, especially intense, physical activity is also prohibited.

Special eye drops are prescribed to prevent infections. For the same reason, for about 2 weeks you should not use any cosmetics. Naturally, contact lenses are strictly prohibited.

The first time vision may still be blurred. There may be ghosting when you look at light sources. But reddening of the eyes and fog disappear within a few days. Only in the most difficult cases it may take up to 3-6 months to fully restore vision.

Special eye drops are prescribed to prevent infections.

To return to the usual way of life, sports and work should be only after the permission of the doctor. If a second operation is required, it is performed only after complete stabilization of vision.

Tip! If the cornea is too thin, 100% improvement in vision, unfortunately, will not be possible. Ophthalmologists will only be able to correct it.

Contraindications

According to reviews, laser vision correction has not only advantages, but also disadvantages. After all, you can not do it all. So, contraindications to it are:

  • age up to 18 years: since before the onset of this period, the eyeball continues to form, it is necessary to wait until the end of this process;
  • pregnancy and lactation, as hormonal imbalance can have a significant impact on the indices of vision;
  • Retinal detachment, cataract and glaucoma: ideal vision correction in these cases is difficult, therefore, prior to the operation, preliminary treatment is carried out;
  • thinning of the cornea (keratotonus): grinding can enhance this process;
  • pathological changes in blood vessels, diabetes;
  • reduced corneal sensitivity;
  • any inflammatory processes in the body, including non-infectious;
  • oncology, AIDS, multiple sclerosis;
  • mental illness.

Despite the guaranteed positive effect, there are many contraindications to the operation.

Tip! With a strong initial loss of vision, a second operation may be necessary. It is called pre-correction. It takes 3-6 months after the first one.

Laser vision correction: reviews

Katerina, 31: I did this operation 4 years ago. Vision was -3.5. It was very painful, and for several days the eyes were reddened. But now beauty. Vision unit, I see excellent. I can't even imagine how I would live without her.

Irina, 41 years old: It turns out that even at my age such an operation is possible. Once the vision was -5. Now I enjoy life and have long forgotten about glasses. Before the operation, I interviewed a bunch of patients - no one seemed to complain about the consequences. One woman had a serious loss of vision, so after the operation she did not become 1.0, but -1. But she is madly glad of this - she says that in her case this is the perfect result.

Svetlana, 35 years old: Of course, it is better not to bring to the operation and take care of your eyes from a young age. But I, unfortunately, could not afford such luxury because I worked at a computer. She went on maternity leave, and after the birth, they discussed this matter with her husband and decided on an operation. I now see perfect, and this is great!

To return to the usual way of life, sports and work should be only after the permission of the doctor

Mila, 24 years old: After surgery, the feeling is indescribable. It's just some kind of miracle - to see the most, without lenses and glasses.

Larisa, 39 years old: It is a pity that I did not make a correction before - I could not decide everything. The doctor advised Lasik. In 2012, the procedure cost me 30 thousand rubles. The only thing - for some reason, the eyes have become more sensitive, especially to wind and dust.

If a second operation is required, it is performed only after complete stabilization of vision.

Galina, 32 years: I once had -5 on one eye, and -2 on the second. The doctor was scared that if I did not wear glasses, then squint would begin. The operation was very long afraid to do because of the very thin cornea. That is why we had to do not Lasik, but PRK. By the way, in the clinic I was honestly warned that the procedure might not be very fruitful. But fortunately, the vision is still restored. And for all 100!