|Swimming pools and natural bodies of water contain many
contaminants that are dangerous to eyes healing from refractive
Seawater is full of active and inert organisms that would be
of no positive value if they were to permeate a cornea compromised by refractive surgery. All refractive surgery techniques including
conventional or wavefront Lasik, Bladeless Lasik, PRK, LASEK, Epi-Lasik, and RLE will require protection from such contaminated environments
for a period of time. Swimming, skiing, scuba diving, surfing, even
sailing can all contaminate the eyes. Swimming pools, although chlorinated,
can cause problems with eyes healing from refractive surgery too.
PRK, LASEK, and Epi-Lasik disrupt the epithelial layer of the cornea, making it more susceptible to
infection. For these types of refractive surgery, staying out of
seawater for at least 4 weeks or as otherwise instructed by your
doctor would be wise.
Conventional or custom wavefront Lasik and Bladeless Lasik have a flap of corneal tissue that is less disruptive
to the epithelium, but creates an interface where foreign particles
may lodge. The outer edge of the Lasik flap seals within about 2-3
Lens based procedures such as RLE and P-IOL require incisions through the cornea into the eye and
are significantly more susceptible to problems than the surface
ablation techniques of PRK, LASEK, and Epi-Lasik, or the flap techniques
of Lasik and Bladeless Lasik. For this reason, seawater exposure
should probably be limited for at least 8-12 weeks.
In all cases, any sort of postoperative problem may require significantly
more time away from seawater or similar environments. Before putting
your eyes in anything that is not sterile, consult your doctor.
Wavefront and Conventional
Wavefront or conventional ablation will make no difference regarding how long one must
be out of seawater or chlorinated pools. That means that you need
to be out of seawater and pool water just as long if you have wavefront
or if you have conventional ablation.
Looking For Best Lasik Surgeon?
If you are ready to choose a doctor to be evaluated for conventional
or custom wavefront Lasik, Bladeless Lasik, PRK, or any refractive surgery procedure, we recommend you consider a doctor who has been evaluated and certified by the USAEyes nonprofit organization.
Locate a USAEyes Evaluated & Certified Lasik Doctor.
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