Laser eye surgery, or laser refractive surgery, is a general term that refers to the use of lasers to reshape the cornea in your eye in order to adjust its focus. Your cornea is the clear part of the front of the eye and by altering the cornea with a precise pattern, the focusing power also changes. These procedures result in better vision and can eliminate altogether the need for corrective eye glasses and contact lenses.
Procedures using lasers are also known by other terms including keratectomy, Lasik, LTK and PRK. They work primarily by correcting any refractive error caused by an in-congruent match up of the eye’s lens and the cornea. These procedures can be used to correct
- Farsightedness – Also called hyperopia, farsighted people see distant objects well, but have problems with blurry, close-up vision. People that need glasses to read a book or see a computer screen are farsighted.
- Nearsightedness – Myopia, another name for nearsightedness, is a condition where a person can see close up objects well, and have difficulty with distance vision. If you need glasses to drive a car, watch television or see the board in school, you have myopia.
- Astigmatism – This is a condition where both near and far objects are blurry.
Whereas eye glasses and contacts are used as aids to help people see better, laser surgery is a permanent adjustment to the eye itself to correct for a mismatch between the lens and the cornea. Many people experience perfect 20/20 vision after surgery.
The type of laser surgery and the exact surgery performed are specific to your eyes. Skilled surgeons have the training and experience and know exactly how to alter the cornea to achieve the vision results you desire. The precision of lasers and their widespread use are testaments to their effectiveness in achieving better vision.