Scheduling and Prepping for Surgery
LASIK surgery allows you to see without the need for corrective lenses or eyeglasses. So, once you decide to undergo the operation, the scheduled day of the procedure will, indeed, mark a momentous event.
A Day before the Procedure
A day before the eye surgery, you’ll need to stop using any makeup, creams, lotions, or scents. That’s because any of these products can leave a residue around the eyes or in the eyelashes, which, in turn, can increase the chance for infection. In fact, you may be asked to wash your lashes right before you undergo the surgery.
The Day of the Surgery
The LASIK procedure itself will generally take under one-half hour. During the surgery, you’ll recline in a chair adjacent to the LASIK equipment, all which includes a machine that features a computer screen and a microscope. An anesthetic drop will be placed into the eye and your eyelid will be held open with a device known as a lid speculum. The doctor will then, in most cases, use an instrument known as a mechanical microkeratome to make a corneal flap.
Making a Corneal Flap
In order to facilitate the process, the doctor will place a ring on your eye to suction the corneal tissue. During this part of the procedure, you may feel a bit of discomfort. The doctor will employ the microkeratome’s blade to incise a corneal flap. After the flap is made, the microkeratome and suction ring are discarded.
In some procedures, a laser keratome, instead of a mechanical microkeratome, is used. If the laser device is used, a plastic plate, instead of a ring, is employed. The clear plastic plate is used to flatten the cornea. Again, you may experience a bit of discomfort when the procedure is being performed. After this part of the process, the plastic plate is removed.
The doctor will raise the corneal flap to dry the connective and supporting tissue. Another laser is then posed over your eye and you’ll be asked to fix your eye on a single spot. When the laser is operating, you’ll hear a soft clicking sound. The laser vaporizes the corneal tissue before the flap is put back into place.
After the Surgery
Because sutures are not needed to sew back the flap, a shield will be applied instead. It’s important to keep the shield on the eye until the flap completely heals. After you undergo the LASIK procedure, you may feel like you’ve been struck in the eye. The eye may also itch or burn as well. A mild pain medication can be taken for any ensuing pain or distress.
In addition, the eyes may water and your vision will be blurry too. If you feel the impulse to rub your eyes, you’ll need to ignore it as doing so can disengage the flap. You’ll also probably experience extra sensitivity to light. Eye drops and artificial tears are generally prescribed to reduce the chance of infection and lubricate the eyes.
Typically, patients are advised to take off from work or refrain from regular activities until the symptoms fade. A follow-up appointment is usually scheduled 48 hours after the surgery. Ongoing visits are normally scheduled at intervals for a half year after the therapy