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LASIK Aftercare Instructions

LASIK eye surgery provides many people with the option to get rid of their contact lenses and glasses and improve their quality of life with better vision. When considering LASIK, it is important to understand what to expect with recovery. Below are some LASIK aftercare instructions to help you have the best possible outcome.

  • Take all of your prescribed medications as instructed.
  • Wear proper eye protection. This can protect your freshly operated eyes from scraping or bumping.
  • Drink lots of water to keep yourself hydrated.
  • Avoid rubbing your eyes.
  • Keep yourself away from exhausting physical activities, especially those which might cause eye injury.
  • It’s better not to exercise for at least one week after the surgery.
  • Don’t take a shower or wash your hair until at least 24 hours after your procedure.
  • Be careful when you’re in the shower or bath. Be sure to keep soap out of your eye when you wash your hair and watch out for hair spray and shaving lotion.
  • Don’t drive until you are instructed to by your doctor.
  • Avoid pools, hot tubs, saunas and lakes for at least 3 weeks.
  • Do not wear eye makeup for at least a week.
  • Avoid dirty and dusty environments.
  • Sunlight may cause damage to your eyes, so wear sunglasses with proper UV protection whenever you are outdoors.
  • Give your eyes a rest. Avoid watching TV, reading or using the computer for the first 24 hours as these activities may strain your eyes.

To learn more about LASIK aftercare instructions in Victoria or to find out if LASIK is a good option for you, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com.

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Side Effects of LASIK Eye Surgery

LASIK is a popular surgery used to correct vision in people who are nearsighted, farsighted or have astigmatism. LASIK eye surgery works by reshaping the cornea, the clear front part of the eye, so that light traveling through it is properly focused onto the retina located in the back of the eye.

LASIK, like any other surgery, has the potential for certain side effects. LASIK eye surgery is one of the safest, most effective and predictable types of surgery one can have today, however, patients should be aware of and fully understand potential side effects before making the decision to have LASIK.

Side effects of LASIK eye surgery may include:

Dry Eyes: Dryness in the eyes is a side effect that should be expected for any patient having LASIK. It is normal and expected for patients to experience a sensation of grittiness or a sandy feeling in the eye following the procedure. This sensation usually tends to resolve itself over the first 1-3 months. It is important to use lubricating eye drops very often after LASIK as this will help your eyes heal and minimize the dry eye symptoms.

Night Glare and Halos: Some patients may experience night glare or halos during the first month following treatment.

Light Sensitivity: Most patients are a little light sensitive right after the procedure.

Slight Discomfort: At some point in the 30-45 minutes after the procedure, your eyes will start to feel uncomfortable. This period of initial healing is the worst part of post-op LASIK recovery as far as side effects go. It only lasts a few hours.

Itchy, Scratchy Eyes: It is also common for patients to feel itchy, scratchy or foreign body sensations in the eyes for several days after LASIK. These sensations usually improve day after day. Preservative-free artificial tears help the eyes feel comfortable whenever those sensations happen. A good tip is to keep some of the artificial tears in the refrigerator, because the cooled tears are extra soothing, especially during the first few days.

For more information about LASIK eye surgery in Victoria, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com.

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LASIK Consultation Preparation

In order to determine if you are a candidate for LASIK, you must first have a thorough, dilated eye exam with a qualified ophthalmologist. This exam is often referred to as a LASIK consultation.

Here are a few things to consider for your LASIK consultation preparation:

Discontinue Contact Use: It is important for you to stay out of your contact lenses for at least 2 weeks prior to your consultation. Contact lens use can change the shape of your corneal surface which can reduce the accuracy of the measurement of your refraction.

Know What to Expect: During the examination several tests will be administered, including measurements taken to determine your prescription, the shape of your eye, the thickness of your cornea and the level of dryness in your eyes.

Make a List of Questions: Your LASIK consultation is intended to gather all the information needed to determine if LASIK is an appropriate method of vision correction for your eyes. But more important, it is an opportunity for you to learn about the procedure and to have all your questions answered.

Medical History and Medication Information: Dr. Boozalis will need to be aware of any medical problems you may have or any medications you are currently taking. Be prepared to share medical information at your visit.

Eye Prescription History: An important factor in LASIK candidacy is having a stable prescription. If you have older prescription information, or actual eyeglasses, please bring them with you to your appointment.

Arrange a Ride Home: Since your eyes may be dilated during the exam, you may want to have a friend or family member drive you home from your appointment.

Coming in for a consultation in Victoria is the best way to determine if you are a candidate for LASIK or an alternative vision correction procedure. If you would like to find out if LASIK is right for you, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com to schedule your LASIK consultation today.

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Corrective Eye Surgery

Corrective eye surgery, also called refractive and laser eye surgery, refers to any surgical procedure used to fix vision problems. Safe and effective corrective eye surgery is a commonly performed method of vision correction to reduce or even eliminate your dependence on glasses or contact lenses. If you would like to be less dependent on corrective lenses, Victoria Eye Center offers several corrective eye surgery options in Victoria including: LASIK, Photorefractive Keratectomy (PRK), LASEK and Refractive Lens Implants.

LASIK, laser in-situ keratomileusis, works for people who are nearsighted, farsighted or have astigmatism. Dr. Boozalis uses a laser to create a flap in the outer layer of the cornea and then reshapes the tissue under the cornea so it can focus light properly. The flap is what makes LASIK different from other procedures.

PRK, photorefractive keratectomy, is used to correct mild to moderate nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism. Like LASIK, a laser is used to reshape your cornea but a flap is not created prior to the corneal reshaping.

LASEK, laser epithelial keratomileusis, is similar to LASIK in that a flap is created. Dr. Boozalis then uses an alcohol solution to loosen the epithelial tissue and then a laser to reshape the cornea. After that, a soft contact lens is placed inside the eye to hold the flap in place while your eye heals. LASEK works well to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism.

RLE stands for refractive lens exchange. Other names include PRELEX, clear lens exchange (CLE), clear lens extraction (CLE) and refractive lens replacement (RLR). This is the same surgery used for cataracts. In this procedure, a small cut is made at the edge of your cornea. The natural lens of the eye is removed and replaced with a silicone or plastic lens. This surgery can correct extreme farsightedness or nearsightedness. It works well for people with thin corneas, dry eyes or other minor cornea problems. A LASIK or LASIK-related procedure can be combined with RLE to correct astigmatism.

The right corrective eye surgery for you is determined through a consultation with Dr. Boozalis. To schedule your appointment, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com.

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What to Expect Before, During and After LASIK – Part Two

After LASIK

Immediately following the procedure, you may experience mild burning or itching in your eye. It could also feel as if something is stuck in your eye. Your vision may be hazy or slightly blurry, and some tears are common. It’s extremely important that you refrain from rubbing your eyes as they heal because doing so may harm them.

It is also important to keep your eyes lubricated for the first few weeks to three months after LASIK surgery. Even when your eyes don’t feel dry, you should use lubricating eye drops 3-4 times a day to prevent your eyes from drying. Patients may also experience increased sensitivity to light which can be alleviated by using sunglasses while outdoors.

Within the first 24 to 48 hours after surgery, you will have a post-operative follow-up appointment. After that, you will have regular appointments for the first 6 months.

Healing is relatively fast following LASIK, but you will want to take a few days off from work after the surgery. Certain activities such as sports and swimming should be avoided for several weeks after the procedure.

It is common for the eyes to continue to heal for at least 3 months after LASIK, which means your vision will also continue to improve. In patients with more severe prescriptions, their eyes can continue to heal for up to 6 months.

To ensure proper LASIK healing, it is very important that you carefully follow all post-operative instructions. Remember that during the LASIK healing you may experience several vision fluctuations and symptoms.

For more information about what to expect before, during and after LASIK in Victoria or to find out if you are a candidate for the procedure, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com today.

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Cataract Surgery Options

Cataracts are a cloudiness that forms in the normally clear lens of the eye, leading to decreased vision. Although cataracts are a leading cause of vision loss in people over the age of 40, cataract surgery options offer an easy solution to clear vision for the millions that suffer from the condition. Depending on your pre-operative vision and desired result, Dr. Boozalis in Victoria may choose to remove your cloudy lens and replace it with a clear lens implant called an intraocular lens, IOL. This has been done for routine cataract surgery for years. There are several IOL options that remedy different types of vision problems. Dr. Boozalis can help you decide which is right for you.

There are numerous cataract surgery options. Below are two categories to consider:

Refractive Cataract Surgery: There are several options for refractive cataract surgery. This category includes surgeries that use special IOL lenses designed to correct myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism. The goal is to correct the cloudiness from the cataract as well as improve nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism, reducing the need for distance and near vision glasses.

Standard Cataract Surgery: Cataract surgery with a basic, standard, IOL. This type of cataract surgery corrects the cloudy lens but does not provide additional vision correction. With this type of cataract surgery, most patients will see better than before the surgery, but unlike other lens options, will likely require glasses at all distances for the best vision.

At Victoria Eye Center, we want you to know that quality vision correction is our specialty. To learn more about your cataract surgery options or to schedule an examination with Dr. Boozalis, contact us at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com today.

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What to Expect Before, During and After LASIK – Part One

Before LASIK

Prior to a LASIK procedure in Victoria, you will need a thorough consultation and complete eye examination by Dr. Boozalis to determine if you are a good candidate for the surgery.

During your pre-surgery examination, Dr. Boozalis will:

  • Dilate your pupils to fine-tune your prescription
  • Examine your eyes to make sure they’re healthy, including testing for glaucoma, performing a retinal exam and assessing for dry eye
  • Measure the curvature of your cornea and your pupils
  • Examine the topography of your eyes to make sure you don’t have an irregular astigmatism or a cone-shaped cornea – a condition called keratoconus
  • Determine the thickness of your cornea. You need to have enough tissue left after your corneas have been cut and reshaped.
  • Discuss the risks, benefits, options and possible complications of LASIK surgery.

If you qualify for LASIK, you will be required to stop wearing your contact lenses for a while before the surgery. Contacts can temporarily change the shape of the cornea and your cornea should be in its natural shape the day of surgery. Dr. Boozalis may instruct you to stop wearing makeup, lotions or perfume for a few days before surgery. These products can interfere with the laser treatment or increase the risk of infection after surgery.

During LASIK

LASIK is an outpatient surgical procedure. The surgery takes 10 to 15 minutes for each eye.

Local anesthetic drops are applied to numb the eye. An eyelid holder is positioned to hold your eye open and prevents blinking during the surgery. A hinged flap of thin corneal tissue is cut off the outer layer of the eye and the flap is lifted out of the way.

During the procedure you will focus on a green flashing light. The laser will apply computer-controlled pulses of cool laser light to remove a pre-determined amount of corneal tissue according to your prescription, reshaping your cornea. The laser reshaping takes between 10 and 30 seconds.

The corneal flap is then replaced and within minutes natural suction forces within the eyes hold the flap in place. Finally, a shield is placed over the eyes to protect them as they heal.

What to Expect Before During and After LASIK to be continued…

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LASIK for Nearsightedness

To see clearly, the cornea and the lens must bend, (refract) light rays so they focus on the retina. The retina is a layer of light-sensing cells that line the back of the eye. These cells convert the light rays into impulses that are sent to the brain where they are recognized as images. If the light rays don’t focus properly on the retina, the image you see is blurry. This is called a refractive error. Glasses, contact lenses and refractive surgery such as LASIK try to reduce these errors by making light rays focus on the retina.

Refractive errors are caused by an imperfectly shaped eyeball, cornea or lens — or in the case of presbyopia, a lens that can’t change shape enough to focus on close objects. The most common type of refractive error is myopia, also known as nearsightedness, a condition where only nearby objects are clear or distinct. Nearsightedness causes patients to have difficulty seeing things that are far away. Because a nearsighted eye is longer than a normal eye, light passing through the cornea gets focused in front of the retina instead of on it. LASIK surgery can correct this condition by reshaping the steep cornea so that light will pass through and be focused at the correct angle on the retina.

Before you sign up for LASIK surgery to correct nearsightedness, here are a few things to think about:

  • LASIK is surgery to a very delicate part of your eye and cannot be reversed.
  • As with any surgery, there are risks and possible complications.
  • Millions of people have had LASIK, many very successfully, but it’s not for everyone.
  • LASIK may not give you perfect vision. Most patients achieve somewhere between 20/20 and 20/40 vision, but 20/40 vision may not be sharp enough for certain work or leisure activities. Even 20/20 does not always mean perfect vision. Detailed, precise vision may be slightly diminished.
  • If you are nearsighted and don’t yet need reading glasses, having LASIK may mean you will need reading glasses earlier than if you had not had the surgery.
  • The benefits of the LASIK procedure may diminish over time. More than 10% of LASIK patients in the U.S. require a second surgery, called an enhancement, to restore the desired vision correction. This is more likely for people who were more nearsighted or farsighted or had higher astigmatism before LASIK.
  • Most insurance plans don’t cover the surgery.

To learn more about how LASIK can correct your refractive error and improve your vision, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com to schedule a consultation and exam.

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LASIK Flap Complications

Despite its excellent record of success and safety, LASIK eye surgery, like all surgical procedures, has some associated risks. Most LASIK side effects are mild and temporary. While serious complications, such as those associated with the LASIK flap, are extremely rare, it’s important that patients be fully aware of all possible risks, no matter how remote, before deciding to undergo the procedure.

What Causes LASIK Flap Complications to Occur?

The creation of a flap in the outermost layer of the cornea is what distinguishes LASIK from other forms of laser refractive surgery such as PRK and LASEK. This means that flap complications are a potential risk of all forms of LASIK. However, these complications are slightly more common when LASIK is performed using a handheld microkeratome surgical tool. While this blade is extremely precise and safe, it is operated by hand; therefore, there is a greater chance of slight imperfections with the resulting corneal flap. In general, these imperfections, jagged edges, uneven depths and other possible issues do not interfere with LASIK results or lead to complications of any sort.

To minimize the risk of flap complications, Dr. Boozalis prefers replacing the traditional microkeratome with a more accurate, computer-guided laser. The all-laser approach using the latest laser technology removes the element of even slight human error, resulting in corneal flaps that have perfectly straight edges with strong hinges and uniform depths.

Reducing the Risk of LASIK Flap Complications

Regardless of the technique used to perform LASIK, patients play a significant role in preventing flap complications. After LASIK surgery, it is vitally important that you follow the post-operative instructions provided to you by Dr. Boozalis. These instructions may include advice tailored specifically to your case, but should include avoiding:

  • Rubbing your eyes
  • Wearing eye makeup
  • Lotion around your eyes
  • Getting water, especially streaming water, directly in your eyes
  • Contact sports
  • Dust and dirt

You will be given protective eye shields to wear during sleep for the first week after your surgery; this will prevent you from accidentally rubbing your eyes at night. Itchiness and irritation can be soothed with artificial tears. Following all post-operative instructions will help to ensure a safe, comfortable, speedy recovery free from LASIK flap complications.

To learn more about LASIK flap complications and how they can be avoided, contact Victoria Eye Center today at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com.

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Common Vision Problems that LASIK Treats

Your eye shape and cornea are keys to better vision. When light enters the eye it is bent, refracted, by a clear tissue on the front of the eye called the cornea. The cornea, in effect, acts like a lens to focus incoming light onto the retina on the back of the eye. If you wear glasses or contacts, these bend the light as needed to adjust for your eye prescription. LASIK vision correction surgery in Victoria can reduce and/or eliminate your dependence on glasses and contact lenses if you suffer from the following common vision problems:

Myopia

Myopia, called nearsightedness, happens when the eye is elongated or the cornea is too curved. Because of this, light entering your eyes does not focus on the retina as it should, but instead focuses on images at a point in front of the retina. The result of nearsightedness is that your distant objects appear blurry, while near objects appear clear.

Hyperopia

Hyperopia, called farsightedness, occurs when the eye shape is either too short or the cornea is excessively flat. Farsightedness happens in eyes that are incorrectly focusing images behind the retina rather than directly on it. The result of farsightedness is that near objects you are seeing appear blurry, while distant objects appear clear. In some cases, hyperopia may cause blurriness at both distance and near.

Astigmatism

If you have astigmatism it is because you have a cornea that is not spherical or basketball-shaped like a normal eye, but your cornea is typically shaped more like a football. The result of astigmatism is that the objects you are viewing are not focused into a single image and vision is distorted or blurry. Astigmatism can be present alone or in addition to nearsightedness or farsightedness.

Reshaping the Cornea

During LASIK in Victoria, Dr. Boozalis uses an excimer laser to reshape the cornea to properly refract light for corrected vision. The laser pulses cool, invisible ultraviolet light to painlessly reshape the cornea in a precisely controlled manner without damaging adjacent eye tissue. The cornea then properly refracts light so you can see without the need for corrective lenses.

To learn more about how LASIK can treat your vision problems, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com to schedule your LASIK evaluation.

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