One Dr. says lasek, another says lasik

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One Dr. says lasek, another says lasik

Postby GeneralPatientInquiry » Wed May 31, 2006 6:05 am

I'm confused about the fact that one doctor strongly suggest me to have a prk (lasek) treatment and another one strongly suggest to have lasik.Besides that I wonder if having had a corneal lateral abscess three months ago should be considered for postponing the surgery (doctors say it's completely ok even if sometimes I still experience pain)
Thank you very much regards
This post is a reprint of a previously requested inquiry received by via email.
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Postby LasikExpert » Wed May 31, 2006 6:06 am

It is not surprising that the doctors are arguing about which procedure is best for you. I recently attended an international congress of ophthalmologists who go through the same arguments. You may be surprised to know that there is no "standard" by which all surgeons provide refractive surgery. Each doctor is a little bit different from another, based upon his or her own results.

As a general rule, a patient needing over 6.00 diopters of correction has an elevated probability of corneal hazing with a surface ablation like PRK. LASIK does not have this hazing problem because the excimer laser energy is applied below a flap of corneal tissue. PRK's cousin LASEK saves the epithelial cells and it is thought that this process reduces the probability of corneal haze, however studies have been inconclusive. With one eye at 5.50 and the other at 6.50, you are right at the point where PRK or LASEK become questionable.

The advantage of PRK/LASEK is that the ablation can be more nuanced and detailed, plus there is no possibility of a complication with a LASIK flap - now or during your lifetime. If your corneas are marginally thin, PRK/LASEK may be more appropriate. If your corneas are thick enough, then LASIK may be the better choice.

If the corneal lateral abscess is reoccurring, I would think LASIK would be a poor choice and refractive surgery of any kind may not be a good idea. LASIK will provide a permanent incision where the cornea is weaker and more susceptible to problems. A surface ablation may be more appropriate, but you need to rely on the advice of the doctor for this issue. That is the professional who has had an opportunity to actually look at the health of your eyes.
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