How vision correction helps us and common misunderstandings
Vision correction is an extremely confusing topic for most people. Regardless of what country you come from. From the examination process, to the choices available and even the down time and pain levels. Patients frequently say the same things, “I’m scared of the pain of LASEK so I will choose to have SMILE.” Firstly, the pain experienced during most vision correction procedures is minimal, and secondly, you do not always have a choice with regards to what vision correction procedure you can get done. This is what we will be taking a closer look at.
Types of procedures available
Before we look at how the examination process works, we need to look at the different types of vision correction procedures that are commonly used. We will focus on the four main ones. LASEK, LASIK, SMILE and PIOL.
LASEK has been a very reliable vision correction procedure performed for over twenty years at B&VIIT. The way LASEK works is by separating the outer layer of the cornea (epithelium) from the layer right beneath it (stromal layer). After the two layers are separated the ophthalmologist uses an excimer laser to reshape the cornea.
Next, we have LASIK. LASIK, just like LASEK, is a laser refractive vision correction surgery. The surgeon separates the two top layers of the eye by creating a circular hinged flap. Once the flap is open the ophthalmologist uses the same excimer laser that is used with LASEK to reshape the corneal tissue. Once the laser part is done the ophthalmologist will close the flap. Allowing the eye to heal faster.
SMILE does not require a separation of the layers of the eye. The SMILE technique is slightly different in that the ophthalmologist makes a small 2mm incision in the corneal tissue. Then a femtosecond laser is used to make a lenticule (piece of corneal tissue). Then the lenticule is removed through the small incision.
PIOL or, lens implantation, can best be described as having lenses implanted in your eyes. As if your contacts are apart of your eyes. PIOL sit either in front of, or just behind, the pupil.
Process of examination
Right, now that we understand the different types of vision correction option, we can take a look at the examination procedure. When you check into the clinic the doctors and optometrists will perform a series of tests on your eyes. At B&VIIT the number of tests amounts to about sixty, and takes about two hours.
The reason for all these tests is to evaluate the condition of your eye. Things such as corneal thickness, corneal topography, pupil measurement etc. This is the important part. While the ophthalmologists are examining your eyes they are ticking off boxes that will eventually allow you to get certain vision correction procedures.
Choose one, none or combination
After your evaluation is completed, you will sit down with the consultant with eye examination results and look over your results. If you are lucky, and your cornea is the right thickness and your eyes are in the right shape, you will be okay to choose any option! Then it comes down to your preference. Time, budget, pain tolerance etc.
Now in some cases your eyes may not be suitable for some options. This could be due to insufficient corneal thickness or perhaps inadequate corneal topography, for example. In this case you might only be eligible for LASEK, or LASIK. In other cases you might only be eligible for SMILE.
In some cases the ophthalmologist might look at the results and determine that SMILE, LASEK and LASIK are to risky. In which case they would recommend you to get PIOL.
As you can see, when it comes to vision correction. It all comes down to the results of your examination. Sometimes we luck out and can choose the option we want. And sometimes we might have to go with our second or third option. At least one thing is for sure when getting any of these vision correction procedures, they work! So no matter which way you go about it, you can rest assured you’re going to leave the clinic without glasses.