Am I a LASIK Candidate? in Houston, TX
If you live in Houston, Missouri City or the surrounding areas of Texas and are tired of wearing glasses or contact lenses to see properly, LASIK may provide you with the natural, clear vision you’ve always wanted and freedom from glasses or contact lenses. LASIK is a delicate procedure and only an experienced ophthalmologist can determine if you are an ideal candidate for LASIK, based on your general health, the condition of your eyes and your particular condition. Board-certified ophthalmologist Mary T. Green, M.D., Ph.D., F.A.C.S., at Eye Excellence offers free LASIK consultations to identify ideal candidates for LASIK surgery.
LASIK is a life-changing procedure. People who have lived their entire lives wearing glasses are able to see clearly for the first time. People who have been insecure about their appearance because of corrective eyewear develop newfound confidence. People who live active lifestyles are able to do so without the hassle of glasses or contact lens, changing their levels of comfort and performance.
LASIK may be used to treat severe degrees of nearsightedness (myopia), moderate amounts of farsightedness (hyperopia) and astigmatism; however the LASIK procedure is highly delicate and may not be suitable for everyone. The goal of LASIK surgery is to reduce dependency on glasses or contact lenses, and while most cases are successful in improving visual acuity, the procedure does not guarantee 20/20 vision.
General Guidelines for Good LASIK Candidates
In order to be considered for LASIK surgery, potential candidates must meet the following criteria:
- Age: Candidates must be adults 18 years old or over.
- General health: Candidates for LASIK must be in good general health. People with certain health problems, including uncontrolled diabetes, autoimmune or collagen vascular disease or those with conditions that compromise the immune response, may not be eligible for LASIK. Please advise Dr. Green if you are taking any prescription medication, as some may affect your eligibility for the procedure.
- Eye health: Optimal candidates for LASIK surgery should not have any eye diseases, including keratoconus, glaucoma, cataracts, corneal disease or certain retinal and optic nerve diseases. LASIK surgery is not recommended for people with certain eye conditions, such as herpes simplex and herpes zoster.
- Eye problems: The best candidates for LASIK should make Dr. Green aware of any existing or chronic eye problems, including amblyopia (lazy eye), strabismus (muscle imbalance) or any recurrent, residual or active eye conditions that may influence the healing process. If you have experienced keloid scarring following previous surgical procedures or if you suffer from back problems or claustrophobia, it is important to discuss this with Dr. Green. Also please inform Dr. Green of any mental health conditions you may be affected by, as these can also affect your eligibility for LASIK surgery or your recovery from the procedure.
- Eye injury: LASIK surgery is not recommended for patients who are currently healing from eye infections or injury. Dr. Green will advise that you postpone the procedure until the condition has fully healed.
- Nursing/pregnancy: LASIK is not recommended for patients who are currently pregnant or nursing, as hormonal fluctuations may affect the stability of your prescription. If you are currently pregnant or nursing, Dr. Green recommends waiting three menstrual cycles after nursing has been discontinued before you consider LASIK surgery.
- Dry eye condition: LASIK is not recommended for patients who continuously suffer from dry eyes.
- Stable vision: It is important to perform LASIK once your vision has stabilized. Therefore, your prescription must be stable for at least one year before you can undergo the procedure.
- Contacts: Dr. Green will recommend that you stop wearing contact lenses for a certain period of time prior to LASIK. Dr. Green will determine the precise period in order to ensure corneal stability and accurate assessment of your prescription prior to the procedure.
Corneal thickness plays an important role in determining whether or not you are eligible for LASIK. Due to the nature of the procedure, the best candidates have a minimum corneal thickness of approximately 500 microns.
A patient’s candidacy for LASIK, Custom LASIK or Bladeless LASIK will be determined during Dr. Green’s careful evaluation and assessment of the patient’s general health, eyes, expectations and lifestyle.
Determining candidacy for LASIK is a crucial step towards reducing or eliminating one’s need for glasses. There are various reasons for which we may suggest that a patient not have LASIK, including:
- Inadequate corneal thickness.
- Cornea too flat.
- Cornea too thin.
- History of dry eye.
- Comorbidity with certain disorders.
To see if you’re a candidate for LASIK Click Here. If you are not a candidate for LASIK, you have many other options. Many LASIK non-candidates have had great success with the ICL, Implantable Collamer (contact) Lens. This procedure can be performed even with many of the contraindications for LASIK candidacy.
The Dangers of Wearing Contact Lenses before Having LASIK
For patients considering LASIK surgery or any other vision correction procedure using laser, it is crucial that you understand how daily use of contact lenses can affect your eyes prior to the procedure:
- Long-term wear: It is common for continued long-term wear of contacts to affect and alter the corneal shape, creating inaccurate or inconsistent measurements of the shape of your cornea and wavefront scan of your visual system. Dr. Green recommends that patients discontinue the use of contact lenses for a period prior to undergoing LASIK surgery in order to allow the corneas to return to their original, natural shape.
- The Custom process: For patients undergoing Custom LASIK surgery, Dr. Green will map your eyes for the procedure. If this mapping in preparation for the procedure is done before the corneas have returned to their original, natural shape, the laser programming may not reflect the patient’s true visual state.
- Open communication: Please inform Dr. Green regarding how long you have been wearing contact lenses and what type of contact lenses you currently wear.
To find out if LASIK is right for you, contact Eye Excellence, located in Houston and serving Missouri City and the surrounding areas of Texas.