Laser Refractive Surgery
Laser refractive surgery, or laser eye surgery, is a procedure used to correct your vision by reshaping the surface of your cornea. It can provide an alternative to wearing glasses or contact lenses, or reduce your need for glasses. Laser eye surgery can be used to correct short-sightedness, long-sightedness and astigmatism.
At Hunter Laser Vision we offer two types laser refractive surgery – LASIK and PRK. Both procedures are safe and highly effective.
LASIK uses two lasers, one to create a hinged flap on the surface of the eye and another to reshape the cornea. Once the cornea has been reshaped the flap is carefully put back in place and remains there without stitches. A stable prescription is preferred for LASIK, so you should usually be at least 18 years old and have no evidence of corneal disease or cataract. Vision normally improves on the day after surgery.
PRK uses a laser to remove the surface layer of the eye. The cornea is then reshaped and a contact lens placed over your eye to protect it while it heals. PRK is often used as an alternative to LASIK and is generally preferred for younger patients and those with thinner corneas. PRK has similar results to LASIK, but recovery takes longer. Your vision will gradually improve after the procedure until it stabilises around week six.
What to expect during your consultation with Hunter Laser Vision
Before you can have corrective eye surgery you will need to come in for a consultation with one of our ophthalmologists. During your consultation they will begin with a review of your medical history and a thorough eye exam. They will also take images of your cornea to determine its shape, as well as to measure corneal thickness and intraocular pressure.
These tests will determine if you are a good candidate for laser refractive surgery and which type. This will depend on a number of factors including your prescription, eye health, age and lifestyle. There are limitations on what prescriptions can be corrected, but your surgeon will assess these after they complete testing.
Once your doctor has examined your cornea and retina they will make a recommendation based on your specific situation. If they believe laser refractive surgery is right for you, they will discuss the procedure and any risks involved, then book a date for your surgery.
Laser Refractive Surgery and post-operative care
Laser refractive surgery will generally last from between 10 – 20 minutes per eye. LASIK is normally done on both eyes at the same time. PRK is generally done on the same day, one eye at a time. Same day surgery can be offered to those who live outside the Newcastle area.
The day after your procedure you’ll need to return to the clinic for a check-up. You will also need to come back two weeks later and again at two months so we can monitor your progress. At Hunter Laser Vision we firmly believe that post-operative care is just as important as the surgery itself.
If having LASIK it’s best if you can take a few days off work to aid your recovery. PRK patients should take off a week. Most LASIK patients are able to drive a few days after the procedure. Patients receiving PRK generally have to wait 1 – 2 weeks before they can return to driving.
For two weeks after laser eye surgery you should avoid heavy lifting and stay out of dirty, dusty environments. You’ll also need to keep the area dry; showering is fine, but no swimming.
For most laser eye surgery patients who are properly selected by their surgeons for surgery have improvements to their vision that last a very long time and the procedure does not need to be repeated.
Hunter Laser Vision has been providing laser refractive surgery for over 20 years. Our years of experience and training mean we can provide you with the best in corrective eye surgery. We are the only laser eye surgery providers in the Hunter area and our surgeons are all local, which means they are easily accessible if you have questions or concerns before or after the surgery. We are committed to customer satisfaction at every step.