When most people think of laser vision correction, they immediately think of LASIK. With more than 20 million procedures performed in the last 25 years, it’s no wonder LASIK is synonymous with laser eye surgery. In fact, it’s the most popular elective procedure in the United States.
Whether you realize it or not, you probably know a handful of people who get to experience life with amazing vision because they have had LASIK. And if you wear glasses or contact lenses, it’s safe to say you’ve considered (or dreamed about) getting LASIK at some point.
But the reality is, LASIK isn’t for everybody. Whether it’s due to the shape or thinness of your corneas, your age, lifestyle, vision, or vision problem, LASIK isn’t a one-surgery-fits-all solution.
If you’ve ever been told you’re not a candidate for LASIK, or just assume as much because of something you’ve heard from a friend or family member, don’t give up hope. It’s possible that you can still live a life with less dependence on glasses or contacts.
Because the road to better vision does not begin and end with LASIK!
While it may be the most recognizable name in vision correction surgery, there are several other types of laser vision procedures that are also clinically proven to let people break free from glasses and contacts.
I Was Told I’m Not a LASIK Candidate. Now What?
At nJoy Vision in Oklahoma City, we’re more than just a LASIK center. Our laser eye surgeons have performed over 75,000 laser vision procedures and we offer a range of surgical options for vision correction.
Depending on your individual needs and goals, one of these vision correction procedures could be perfect for you:
Visian ICL is a revolutionary Implantable Collamer® Lens that offers many benefits, especially for patients who cannot have LASIK due to a high level of myopia (nearsightedness), thin corneas, or dry eye.
Visian ICL does not cause dry eye symptoms, which can be a concern with LASIK. Visian ICL also offers UV protection and has a superb patient satisfaction rate.
Visian ICL is implanted in the cornea in front of the eye’s natural lens during a procedure that lasts approximately 20 to 30 minutes. You can expect near-immediate vision improvement with minimal recovery time and you will not be able to see or feel the ICL once it is in place.
Unlike LASIK, which permanently changes the shape of the cornea, Visian ICL is an additive technology that can be removed, if needed.
Ideal candidates for Visian ICL are aged 21 to 45 with mild to severe nearsightedness (myopia) with a prescription between –3D and –20D that has been stable for at least one year. Visian ICL can also treat astigmatism (1.0D and 4.0D) with the special Toric Visian ICL lens.
Visian ICL is used to treat:
- Nearsightedness (myopia) with or without astigmatism
You could be a good Visian ICL candidate if you:
- Are between the ages of 21 and 45
- Have mild to severe myopia
- Want to avoid or are susceptible to dry eye syndrome
- Have not had a significant change in vision in the last six months
- Have no history of eye disease
Much like LASIK, Photo-Refractive Keratectomy (PRK) is a laser vision correction surgery that uses a laser to reshape the cornea in order to correct refractive errors.
But in contrast to the LASIK procedure, which creates a flap in the outer layer of the eye and replaces it after the cornea has been reshaped, PRK completely removes the layer and allows it to grow back on its own.
PRK is often referred to as “LASIK but without the flap.”
Visual improvement and recovery time may take a bit longer than LASIK or Visian ICL procedures, but is still a great option for many people.
PRK can correct nearsightedness with a prescription up to -12D, and it is a great option for patients who cannot have LASIK due to thin corneas.
Ideal candidates for PRK are over 18 and have had a stable prescription for at least one year.
PRK is used to treat:
- Nearsightedness (myopia)
- Farsightedness (hyperopia)
You could be a good PRK candidate if you:
- Are over 18 years of age
- Meet certain vision prescription limits
- Have thin corneas
- Have dry eyes
- Have a history of epithelial abrasions
- Haven’t had a change in vision in at least a year
Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is a vision correction surgery in which the eye’s natural lens is replaced with an artificial intraocular lens (IOL). This procedure is identical to cataract surgery and is typically performed on one eye at a time.
Depending on the type of IOL chosen, RLE can correct a range of vision errors, including nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), age-related near vision loss (presbyopia), and astigmatism.
Unlike LASIK and PRK, which reshape the cornea and are still susceptible to age-related vision changes, RLE is a great option for patients over 40.
RLE is used to treat:
- Nearsightedness (myopia)
- Farsightedness (hyperopia)
- Age-related near vision loss (presbyopia)
You could be a good RLE candidate if you:
- Are over the age of 40
- Are not a good LASIK candidate
- Have moderate to severe hyperopia
- Have presbyopia (need for reading glasses)
- Have corneal abnormalities
Choosing the Right Vision Correction Surgery
There are many factors to consider when choosing a vision correction procedure. The best choice for you will depend on your prescription, your lifestyle, and the types of benefits you are seeking.
Contact us to learn more about the laser vision correction options at nJoy Vision, or