Author Topic: Should I get LASIK?  (Read 32387 times)

TomTX

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #50 on: August 08, 2014, 05:25:06 AM »
I had vision not as bad as yours (-6.5/-4.5) - and got LASIK for $5,000 from the top surgeon in Houston. In 1998. LASIK only went out to the public 6-7 years before that, IIRC.

Vision is still really good. I have occasional fuzziness, but that's due to spending way too many hours on the computer. 

One of the best decisions I have ever made. I probably should have done it sooner.

As an FYI - it used to be cheaper to fly to Canada from the US, get LASIK done at a top surgeon, and stay in a very nice hotel for a couple of days.

FuckRx

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #51 on: August 08, 2014, 09:36:30 AM »

as a few others mentioned, the skills of the doctor only matter in selecting the right patient, the surgery is 99% done by the machine nowadays. A great surgeon will only pick the best candidates and give you great follow up and give you great care instructions. the shitty surgeon will take anyone and hope for the best.

sneeria

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #52 on: August 08, 2014, 10:31:23 AM »
My mom had it done ~10 years ago and was really happy with the results. However 6 months ago she suffered a detached retina which required surgery, followed by cataract surgery last month. The doctor told her anytime you introduce lasers into your eye you are increasing the risk of a retinal detachment.  Her original lasik doctor did not mention that to her. I have terrible myopia but I'll stick with contacts after seeing what she went through. She's almost 60 btw.

boognish

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #53 on: August 08, 2014, 11:04:45 AM »
I've want to do this since forever. I'm 25 and my Rx is stable, I feel like running out of the office and having it done right now after all the positive responses in this thread.

I'd love to have corrected vision for soccer/surfing/running/hiking/getting hit in the head

wtjbatman

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #54 on: August 08, 2014, 11:58:45 AM »
My mom had it done ~10 years ago and was really happy with the results. However 6 months ago she suffered a detached retina which required surgery, followed by cataract surgery last month. The doctor told her anytime you introduce lasers into your eye you are increasing the risk of a retinal detachment.  Her original lasik doctor did not mention that to her. I have terrible myopia but I'll stick with contacts after seeing what she went through. She's almost 60 btw.

Yeah, I hear ya. My cousin was in two car accidents in a 12 month span. Because of that I never drive. It's just not safe!

sneeria

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #55 on: August 08, 2014, 12:06:33 PM »
I'd rather have to wear contacts than have my permanent vision affected. Idc what others do. I just wanted to share info that she didn't get when she was considering her surgery. I love the internet.

davef

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #56 on: August 08, 2014, 12:24:06 PM »
Probibility of complications as of 2002. It has most certainly gone down since then.

Night glare (halos, starbursts): 1 in 50
Under/over-correction: less than 1 in 100
Increased intraocular pressure: non signifi cant
Corneal haze: 1 in 1,000
Corneal scarring: non signifi cant
Loss of BCVA: 1 in 100
Infection: 1 in 5,000
Corneal fl ap complications (dislocated fl ap, epithelial ingrowth):less than 1 in 100
Most of the complications were done by hand cutting the cornea and the resulting scar.
Now that a laser is more often used to cut the flap the complications are musch less.
You have a greater chance of geeting struck by lightning than having side effects that require surgery.

sheepstache

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #57 on: August 08, 2014, 01:45:51 PM »
My mom had it done ~10 years ago and was really happy with the results. However 6 months ago she suffered a detached retina which required surgery, followed by cataract surgery last month. The doctor told her anytime you introduce lasers into your eye you are increasing the risk of a retinal detachment.  Her original lasik doctor did not mention that to her. I have terrible myopia but I'll stick with contacts after seeing what she went through. She's almost 60 btw.

Yeah, I hear ya. My cousin was in two car accidents in a 12 month span. Because of that I never drive. It's just not safe!

I'd rather have to wear contacts than have my permanent vision affected. Idc what others do. I just wanted to share info that she didn't get when she was considering her surgery. I love the internet.

Yeah, that's my thinking.  Never driving would be super inconvenient.  But wearing contacts, really not a big deal.  So even though I understand the risks are very small, I just wouldn't gain enough for the potential downside to be worth it.  It makes a lot of sense to me when people with sensitivity to contacts do it, or have astigmatism that requires specialty lenses, etc. 

My mom went for it when she started needing reading glasses.  She got sick of having multiple pairs of glasses stashed around the house, car, etc.  Bifocals didn't do it for her and her brain couldn't get the hang of the contact lenses with concentric rings of alternating prescriptions.  She'd worn rigid lenses her whole life and was required to switch to soft contacts for some number of months prior to the surgery.  Apparently the lenses can hold your cornea in shape and affect your prescription!  And indeed her vision got measurably worse.  Then for maybe a month she had to do only glasses because even soft contacts can have an effect and they want to make sure you're at your true prescription. 

Some years later she ended up needing special night driving glasses which they said was related to the surgery.  But her mother had needed them too in old age so I think she accepted it might have happened either way.

Fuzzy Buttons

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #58 on: September 02, 2014, 02:07:57 PM »
This is something I've been considering, and I'd love to hear from more people who are older.

Back in 1998 I asked my eye doctor if I should pursue LASIK, and at the time he said yes.  He said that I was young enough to get some good out of it, but that I should be aware that when you get into your 40s your eyes begin to lose their ability to change focus.  So I would probably still need reading glasses.  At the time, I decided not to do the procedure.  I can wear contacts with no problems, though I do need them all the time.  I also thought it might be nice when I'm older for my eyes to lock into a shorter distance, enabling me to read without glasses.  That way I wouldn't be like my parents at a restaraunt - holding the bill at arm's length to try and make out the tip.

Today I'm 44, and I'm beginning to experience the inability to change focus.  I now have a cheap pair of reading glasses I use from time to time.  I can't read small print without them.  But since I wear the contacts all the time, I also can't read anything without them - except at night when I might have removed the contacts already and I'm reading before bed.  And as I think about getting older, I assume a time will come when I cannot manage the contacts any more, and I'll be back to glasses.  I have always been someone who sweats a lot, and I haven't worn glasses since back before I did regular excercise.  I'm not looking forward to managing glasses with running or biking.

I figured I was too old for LASIK now, until lately when my 65 year old aunt got it.  So now I'm back to considering it again.  Anybody else got the procedure in middle age?  What have your experiences been?  Thanks in advance.  :)

FatCat

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #59 on: September 02, 2014, 02:42:20 PM »
I would not recommend LASIK. I know the odds are in your favor that it will turn out well, but I feel like I should give input to my experience.

My surgery was about 7 years ago when I was 24.  I am now 31. My before vision was about -7.50 and -8.00. My current vision is -1.75 and -2.00 which means I still needs glasses. Also now I have bad halo effects and blurry night vision. And my eyes hurt when I try to wear contacts. Actually they are dry and slightly hurt most of the time.

My doctor blatantly lied to me. She told me before the surgery that there was no chance I would have the halo effects. She also said she would redo the surgery if I wasn't satisfied. After surgery she said she never told me anything about likeliness of halo effects and she would have told me I have 100% odds of having halo effects if I'd asked about them because my before vision was so bad. This was a total lie since we talked about halo effects at length and she assured me my odds were very low. I have BAD halo effects at night and in low lighting. This makes watching movies in a dark room very annoying. The doctor told me the effects will eventually go away. I think that eventually people just quit complaining about it or the brain just rewired itself to think halos at night is normal. It has not gone away at all and is every bit as annoying as ever.

She also refused to do any touch ups and told me that I should be satisfied with the current vision level which still requires glasses. She said since my glasses aren't as thick as they were before, it's still a successful surgery.

Also my left eye has a bit more halo than the right because she claims I moved my eye when she did the procedure on that eye. I couldn't tell that I had moved the eye at all. She put a dropper in that blinds the eye before starting the laser. My guess is that when blinded my eye shifted slightly without my awareness. But this is considered my fault and not her error.

Please keep in mind this is a highly respected LASIK doctor in my area. I didn't do one of those fly by night discount doctors even though my experience might sound like it.

Due to these halo effects I don't feel safe driving at night. It's very difficult to determine the distance of cars when the headlights all appear as big white blobs. I have to wait a very long time to make a turn because I have almost no way to be sure how far away the white blob headlights are unless they are very very far or very very close. During the day my vision is fine and I don't have this sort of issue.

So as far as finances, it didn't save me anything at all obviously. And my quality of life is noticeably worse at night time and in darkened environments.

I know the odds are in your favor. But assess if you would be satisfied if you end up as part of the 1-3% that ends up with really sucky results that will affect you the rest of your life. A good outcome would be great no doubt.  But a bad outcome will probably mean irreparable damage to the your most important sense.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2014, 03:22:00 PM by FatCat »

Beric01

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #60 on: September 02, 2014, 03:16:28 PM »
I don't even see how a "good outcome" is so great. I wear glasses 24/7 anyway (I'm practically blind without them). They're part of my body and I'm used to them. What's so great about not wearing them? I've never understood contacts for this reason either. You have to put something into your eyes, AND it continually drains your wallet?

Lasik becomes worthwhile when it's cheaper than a pair of glasses (or perhaps the future value of the money I would spend on glasses). And if you still need any glasses at all, even reading glasses, doesn't that defeat the entire purpose?

Lasik seems more like an excessive luxury to me. I don't get it.

FatCat

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #61 on: September 02, 2014, 03:42:18 PM »
I don't even see how a "good outcome" is so great. I wear glasses 24/7 anyway (I'm practically blind without them). They're part of my body and I'm used to them. What's so great about not wearing them?


Whether or not LASIK or even contacts would benefit you depends on your lifestyle and hobbies. For me, I enjoy doing sports, dancing, and movements that are greatly hindered by glasses. Doing flips, fast movements, or any type of martial arts is greatly benefited by contacts. I simply move too fast for the glasses to stay on my face safely during certain activities. I guess I could wear a strap to secure the glasses, but the contacts are the best choice. Of course most people would not have these sorts of problems to worry about anyway.

Another issue is water sports. Water spraying in your face will quickly displace your glasses and there is a high risk of losing them in a large body of water. Yes, you wear a floating strap to keep from losing the glasses if they come off, but they can still detach and you might find only your floaty with no glasses attached. Also, water on the glasses lowers your visibility, so you have to clean them constantly. Contacts are considered unsafe for water sports because it increases the risk of infection from bacteria in the water.

The last reason would be simply aesthetics. Some people prefer the look of glasses, some prefer no glasses. I wouldn't risk surgery for just aesthetic reasons.

Mother Fussbudget

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #62 on: September 02, 2014, 05:10:42 PM »
OP:  I'm 20 years your senior, got Lasik last December. No regrets.
Because of my older eyes, I now need 'readers' for up-close detail work (i.e. the laptop & cell phone), but readers are 3 pair for $6.  Otherwise, I see FINE. 

In my area, there was a GroupOn Deal http://www.groupon.com/local/seattle/lasik for a wickedly low price.  A friend at a Meetup event mentioned it, and it worked for me.  Worth checking out - for the link above, I googled 'GroupOn Lasik surgery Seattle'.  Do the same for your area.

Beric01

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #63 on: September 02, 2014, 05:28:59 PM »
I don't even see how a "good outcome" is so great. I wear glasses 24/7 anyway (I'm practically blind without them). They're part of my body and I'm used to them. What's so great about not wearing them?


Whether or not LASIK or even contacts would benefit you depends on your lifestyle and hobbies. For me, I enjoy doing sports, dancing, and movements that are greatly hindered by glasses. Doing flips, fast movements, or any type of martial arts is greatly benefited by contacts. I simply move too fast for the glasses to stay on my face safely during certain activities. I guess I could wear a strap to secure the glasses, but the contacts are the best choice. Of course most people would not have these sorts of problems to worry about anyway.

Another issue is water sports. Water spraying in your face will quickly displace your glasses and there is a high risk of losing them in a large body of water. Yes, you wear a floating strap to keep from losing the glasses if they come off, but they can still detach and you might find only your floaty with no glasses attached. Also, water on the glasses lowers your visibility, so you have to clean them constantly. Contacts are considered unsafe for water sports because it increases the risk of infection from bacteria in the water.

The last reason would be simply aesthetics. Some people prefer the look of glasses, some prefer no glasses. I wouldn't risk surgery for just aesthetic reasons.

And all of these problems are easily surmountable - that's what I don't understand. I can bike at 30mph without losing my glasses, but in any activity where I actually might have them fall off, you can buy a strap for $5. MUCH cheaper than contacts (let alone LASIK).

Swimming and watersports - I agree that you shouldn't wear glasses, and I'm completely blind swimming without them. But you can get full prescription goggles. Much cheaper (and what I do) is just buy some corrective goggles, available with a +/- diopter depending on your subscription. Mine were $25.

Notice those issues were fully solvable for cheap. That's what I don't understand: what's so bad about glasses? I've worn glasses since age 2, and I've never hated them. My younger brother (who still has 20-20 vision to this day) always wanted to know when he would be old enough to get his own. :-)

As for the vanity reason, everyone has their own preferences on what looks good. Personally, I think a lot of people look better wearing glasses. Unless you're a supermodel who needs to fit a certain "image", I can't see the reason to spend so much. Agreed with you on aesthetics.

This operation has the added benefits of being potentially temporary, possible complications, and is quite expensive. IMO it is a definite luxury and not very Mustachian.

Because of my older eyes, I now need 'readers' for up-close detail work (i.e. the laptop & cell phone), but readers are 3 pair for $6.  Otherwise, I see FINE.

And so you still have to carry around a pair of reading glasses. Actually I find carrying around glasses far worse than just wearing them 24/7, because you have to manage a case and/or putting them in your pocket, and hence they are losable. I don't see the advantage here.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2014, 05:32:38 PM by Beric01 »

FatCat

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #64 on: September 02, 2014, 07:39:45 PM »
I agree that you're not likely to lose your glasses while biking, even intense biking. I tend to send them flying while dancing, doing quick spinning, doing drops or flips, hanging upside down, and things of that nature. I could just wear a strap, but I find it just feels better with contacts. You don't really see many dancers, gymnasts, or Cirque du Soleil performers with strapped on glasses. I guess you could do those things with strapped on glasses, but it would be more uncomfortable for some. And while I find the aesthetics of glasses to be a neutral issue under normal circumstances, I would feel like a dork wearing strapped on glasses during a performance. So yeah, aesthetics are still involved. But that being said, I really don't do these sorts of activities as much anymore so I barely ever wear contacts nowadays. Also I get several boxes of them for free every year so I claim my maximum allowance on them.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2014, 07:48:32 PM by FatCat »

Goldielocks

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #65 on: September 02, 2014, 08:56:59 PM »
Hi guys,

Here's my situation: I'm 32 years old, severely nearsighted (-8/-8.5) with astigmatism in one eye, and I wear contacts pretty much 24/7. I've been trying to figure out if LASIK makes sense for me financially.

Right now, I spend ~$175-$200/year on vision ($80 in insurance premiums to get vision insurance through my work, $60 in co-pays for annual exam with contact lens fitting, $35-50 for cost of contacts above what my insurance reimburses [I keep this low by wearing lenses for a month before throwing them out, which I've found I can do without my eyes getting too upset]). However, I'm about to switch jobs to one where I think I'll end up paying maybe $100-$125/year instead because of the different insurance coverage. Neither my new insurance nor my current insurance covers LASIK.

From what I've gathered looking around online, LASIK costs about $4000, sometimes more in big cities like the one where I'll be living. So, assuming, very crudely, that getting LASIK would shave $100 off my annual eye care costs, I ought to come out ahead if I live for 40+ more years, which I certainly hope will be the case!

Does this seem reasonable to you guys? Is this realistic, or will there be additional vision costs in a post-LASIK-life that I'm unaware of? I'm obviously not taking into account the interest that I could earn on the money or potential effects of inflation--does that tip the balance in favor of sticking with contacts? Finances being equal, I'd slightly prefer LASIK, but I'm lucky to have eyes that are very contact-tolerant and I basically leave them in all the time, so it's not a gigantic deal to me.

Have you been evaluated at a top of the line eye centre yet? My DH went with $5k, saved and ready.  He has between -6.5 and -8.5 himself, so just being able to read the alarm clock was a potential benefit.

He found out that between his severity pf surgery and eye shape, his result would give him night vision problems.  That the alternative better solution was implantable contact lenses (for a lot more), similar to cataract surgeries out there.

So -- why not go and spend $150 to get an evaluation from a highly reputable group?

TomTX

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #66 on: September 02, 2014, 08:59:54 PM »
Laser eye surgery is not guaranteed to fix your eyes for the rest of your life.  There aren't any ( that I'm aware of) long-term studies on it..  Anecdotally, I've heard that many people end up wearing glasses again within a decade, albeit with a weaker prescription than pre-surgery. 

Here's an anecdote: I had LASIK more than 15 years ago. No glasses or contacts. No need for them.

One of the best things I have done for myself is LASIK.

Beric01

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #67 on: September 02, 2014, 09:01:14 PM »
One of the best things I have done for myself is LASIK.

I'm genuinely curious what specifically is so much better.

NoraLenderbee

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #68 on: September 02, 2014, 09:48:42 PM »
You're probably going to need reading glasses eventually, whatever your eyesight is today. I reached that point some years back, and believe me, I would much rather have *one* prescription to deal with than two. Bifocals and progressive lenses are both a compromise--you have the convenience of your distance and reading together, but the sweet spot of sharp vision is smaller in each case, and with progressives, you end up twisting your head a lot to see through the one little spot that has the correct focus for what you're looking at. I've worn glasses since I was 11, BTW.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #69 on: September 03, 2014, 10:39:11 AM »
For those of you who had the surgery 10+ years ago, have any of you had to get glasses or follow-up treatment as your eyes have continued to worsen?
I had it done in 2002 at age 21.  I'm 33 now and have noticed no significant degradation.

A few caveats:
--Night vision is kinda half-perfect, half-not.  Still zero problems seeing well enough to drive at night.
--I've noticed that my vision is better when I'm well-rested than when I'm short on sleep.  Not sure if this has anything to do with LASIK per se, though.

As others have said, it's not a financial decision.  Would I do it again?  YES, YES, A THOUSAND TIMES YES!  We did it for my wife five years ago, paid somewhere between $3k and $3.5k.  There's nothing quite like waking up the next day and seeing clearly.

BeardedLady

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #70 on: September 03, 2014, 11:01:19 AM »
Yes, I'd also love to hear if anyone knows about long-term studies, or if anyone here had LASIK awhile back, how it's stood the test of time for them.

So surprised by the overwhelmingly positive response! Just to clarify, I typically only take my contacts out one night a month--I throw the old pair away at night and put the new pair in in the morning. I wear them when I swim, with goggles for serious swimming, or just closing my eyes when I go underwater if I'm just horsing around. So a lot of this "see-all-the-time benefit" I already have because I'm blessed with very contact-tolerant eyes. Of course, it's not 100% the same (and who knows if I'll be able to get away with this forever?), but I don't anticipate it being the huge, life-altering change it was for many of you guys.

This makes me cringe a little bit. (I'm an optometrist) Please get LASIK. You are gambling with the only two eyes you have. Any pool or lake water that may get in your eyes while wearing contacts can cause serious problems. Google acanthamoeba...it's not a pretty picture, it can happen to you, and it often ends in a corneal transplant surgery. At the very least, you should be throwing away your lenses after swimming in them.

If you have the type of lenses you can sleep in for 30 days continuously, sleeping in them would be fine. However, from some of the other comments you have made, I would bet you are in Acuvue lenses. These are only approved for up to 6 nights continuously (if using Acuvue Oasys) and must be replaced every 2 weeks, and you are again gambling with your vision if you are overwearing them. Bacterial ulcers can develop and leave large white scars that block your vision. If you wait to replace your lenses until they start to make your eyes uncomfortable, your eyes are already damaged and susceptible to infection. Please take care of your eyes. The alternative is not worth it. You are definitely the type of person I would push toward LASIK. Check out TLC if you have one in your area, or ask your optometrist for a referral. Optometrists will refer to surgeons who use the best technology and have a very high success rate.

If you decide not to have LASIK soon, get in some lenses that fit your lifestyle better. Try monthly replacement lenses that are approved for 1 month of extended (overnight) wear and supplement with a box of daily disposable lenses for swimming. Sorry if this post sounds preachy. I am pretty passionate about eyeballs! Good luck with whatever you end up choosing!

thd7t

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #71 on: September 03, 2014, 12:57:50 PM »
My wife got Lasik last November and loves it.  Here's my tip from the 'stache.  Ask for the following discounts: Paying cash.  This was worth around 15% off for us.  Ask if your health insurance gives a discount.  We got another 10% off.  That's pretty big money when it comes to Lasik. 

klystomane

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #72 on: September 04, 2014, 11:23:29 AM »
I'd love to do this as well. Y'all think it makes sense to do this in Korea? Should be cheaper. (I currently live here).

I had LASEK (not to be confused with LASIK) done in SK in February of this year. No regrets so far.

Eyes are slightly dryer than they used to be, but I don't use eye drops regularly.

It's supposed to be a pretty standard procedure in SK, but definitely do your homework on who the good doctors are.

theadvicist

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #73 on: September 05, 2014, 02:42:56 AM »
One of the best things I have done for myself is LASIK.

I'm genuinely curious what specifically is so much better.

Only speaking for myself Beric01, but for me glasses weren't so much impractical (I can see how you can get around most things) but they were uncomfortable. I tried many different frames. I found ones with those little feet that sit on your nose and make indents very uncomfortable. Extra light (read: extra expensive) frameless ones were better. All plastic ones were the most comfortable. But when I wanted to lay on my side with my head on a pillow and watch TV, I couldn't. Actually impossible to do that because my glasses would take the weight of my head and push it against the bridge of my nose.

It may seem inconsequential to some, but since you genuinely asked, that's the reason I had surgery. I found glasses damn uncomfortable. I'd compare it to a bra, just always aware it's there. I didn't tolerate contacts well enough to wear them for extended lengths of time.

Onto my surgery experience, I was advised against LASIK because apparently I have a tiny hole in 1 retina (doesn't affect my vision), and LASIK changes the pressure in the eye, which, combined with this hole, put me at a much increased risk of retinal detachement (still less than 1%, but too high for me). I was recommended LASEK instead, which is a similar procedure, but instead of making a flap they lift, they scraped away enough cells to laser straight through. Then the cells regrow.

This was apparently a safer procedure (according to my doctor) because it didn't involve the pressure change, and the lack of flap reduced the risk of infection. The downside is the pain. Scratching so many cells off your eye hurts as much as it sounds. Obviously I had full anaestic during - I didn't feel a thing on my eyeball (although the clip holding my eyelids open was painful).

Afterwards it was seriously so much pain. I've had gallstones (which I think ranks pretty high on the pain scale, and yeah, wow, I thought I was dying that time), and I can honestly say this pain was worse. It also lasted a long time. Probably a whole week of constant pain. Then pain most of the time, then just in the morning. I had a hideous stabbing pain (caused by dry eyes I think) on waking, every day for probably two years. My surgery was nearly 5 years ago, I still get the occasional morning stab (once every couple of months).

I said after the surgery if I knew how painful it was, I wouldn't have done it.

However, the amazing this about the human mind is that it does not 'remember' pain. You know how you can think back to a happy time and get a flood of happiness? You can't think back to pain and recreate it (under normal circumstances. PTSD etc obviosuly is something else). This lack of pain memory is apparently why people have more than one child, and it can be the only reason I occasionally think visiting a night club is a good idea.

Now that I can't remember the actual pain, only that it was very painful, I honestly think this was one of the best 'things' I ever purchased. Being able to see the clock in the morning is amazing! Although wow, I never realised how many cobwebs there were in my bathroom, or how dirty the grout was, since I never wore vision correction in the shower before!

I did a lot of research. I could have got it done at half the price at the mall. I called them and asked what would happen if I had a problem and they were closed. They said they would refer me to the local (NHS, I'm in the UK) specialist eye hospital. I looked the hospital up, and they had a private wing that does the surgery for a profit, will all profits being reinvested in the NHS eye service. I felt good about this - money going into the NHS and excellent doctors who I might have been referred to anyway. Cannot say enough good things about it, and if anyone in the UK would like the details, PM me.

TLDR - wasn't suitable for LASIK, had LASEK (allegedly 'safer'). It hurt like hell. I would do it again though. Do a lot of research.

justajane

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #74 on: September 05, 2014, 07:32:43 AM »
Quote
As for the vanity reason, everyone has their own preferences on what looks good. Personally, I think a lot of people look better wearing glasses. Unless you're a supermodel who needs to fit a certain "image", I can't see the reason to spend so much.

As a woman, I'm glad to hear you say this, although anecdotally very few young women think they look attractive with glasses on. Out of curiosity, sometimes I'll pay attention to a room and notice that I am one of the few women under 50 who has glasses on.

I hate contacts. They make my eyes extremely dry, and by the end of the day I am desperate to have them off. For this reason, I have been wearing glasses almost exclusively since I was a teenager. I'm 37 now. Luckily I found a guy to marry who loves nerdy glasses. Win win! I really don't even notice they are there or that I put them on in the morning. When I get up at night, it's dark anyway.

In my younger years, if someone had asked me what I would change about myself, I would have most certainly said my vision. These days, I could come up with a myriad of other things I would change first.

I understand why others feel differently, and I am admittedly not very sporty. But I just thought I'd weigh in as another person who has made peace with my crappy vision.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2014, 07:34:31 AM by justajane »

gt7152b

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #75 on: September 05, 2014, 08:01:20 AM »
I don't even see how a "good outcome" is so great. I wear glasses 24/7 anyway (I'm practically blind without them). They're part of my body and I'm used to them. What's so great about not wearing them? I've never understood contacts for this reason either. You have to put something into your eyes, AND it continually drains your wallet?

Lasik becomes worthwhile when it's cheaper than a pair of glasses (or perhaps the future value of the money I would spend on glasses). And if you still need any glasses at all, even reading glasses, doesn't that defeat the entire purpose?

Lasik seems more like an excessive luxury to me. I don't get it.

Everyone's situation is different but contacts are actually cheaper for me than glasses. I spend $80 to $100 on RGP contacts about every 8 years. My last pair of glasses were about $140. They do last longer than contacts but I don't wear them that much. Also, my vision with contacts is MUCH better than with glasses. I'm extremely blind and the refraction on my coke bottles gives me a serious fish bowl experience. I can drive with my glasses but I have to be extra careful because of the tunnel vision. Contacts give me great vision in my full peripheral. I've considered LASIK because I have dry eye issues when biking with contacts but it's not worth the cost and risk in my opinion. Contacts however are completely worth it even if they cost 2x the glasses over time. I don't see a good value in soft contacts because of their low durability.

jabba

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #76 on: September 05, 2014, 08:28:48 AM »
Someone said not to use Groupon, but that shouldn't be a hard rule. Here's my story:

My mom was essentially legally blind, has worn very thick coke bottle glasses her whole life and suffered from pretty severe CSS (can't see shit) without them. She researched for like two years in the early 2000s to find the best dr. in the state, found all the pros and cons of going to other countries, vs. paying the higher cost in the US and eventually decided to have it done by the leading specialist within a 2 hour drive. PERFECT vision resulted. I've never seen my mom so happy. she was probably mid-40s at the time. Now she's mid-50s, 10 years later, and she is starting to reach the age where her eyes aren't cooperating and I see her squinting a bit here and there and I think she has a very light prescription for glasses for reading or far away or something, I don't remember which, but it apparently happens to everyone as they get older.

2 years ago, I had a little extra cash and there was a program through my work that would reimburse up to $600 of medical type expenses that weren't covered by insurance, so I decided to see if I could get LASIK as well and use that towards the cost. Well, it turns out I found a groupon that did half-off the regular price and it was for the SAME doctor that did my mom's eyes 10 years prior. Some internet researched suggested he was still the best in the state, so I went for it. I think it was $2300 total for both eyes, and the stipulation for the groupon was that it had a 3-year "free touch up warranty" instead of the 5-year one. So I went for it. Paid the $2300 for the groupon, got $600 reimbursed through work, so my total cost was $1700. And yes, this was the best $1700 I ever spent. The post care kinda sucked, had to put eye drops in a few times a day for a few months, but now a few years later, I don't even really remember any of that and it's just so nice not having to deal with glasses or contacts. I also got a nice set of sunglasses off the shelf. The brand name sunglasses off the shelf cost less than the prescription ones I had before (I hated dealing with contact lenses). Definitely best decision ever. Wish I had done it ten years earlier.

Then after I got mine done, my brother got his done. He paid equivalent of about $900 to have it done in the Czech Republic, he also reports perfect vision (his was almost as bad as my mom's before), and he couldn't be happier either. So I fully recommend having it done, do the research ahead of time, figure out the right place to have it done, then look for their deals and specials. Even the good ones are doing groupons these days because there is so much competition in the market.

As I understand it, the equipment used by all LASIK specialists is the same, and most of the cost goes to pay the LASIK company or whatever for the use of the equipment. The main difference in cost between providers and probably countries is the frequency in which they replace the equipment. I don't know the details, but I think of it like kitchen knife that gets dull over time. The high cost providers in the US basically replace this "knife" every few uses so that they always have a nice sharp precise laser.. the lower cost places don't replace it as often, so you don't get the same precision.

So, I would use a groupon, but I would not choose a place based on the groupon. I had decided which provider to go with and then happened to find a good deal. I looked around the office. They seemed to be using the same equipment for all the patients. It's not like they had a "full price" machine and a "groupon customers only" machine. :)

Simple Abundant Living

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #77 on: September 05, 2014, 09:36:47 AM »
One of the best things I have done for myself is LASIK.

I'm genuinely curious what specifically is so much better.

Only speaking for myself Beric01, but for me glasses weren't so much impractical (I can see how you can get around most things) but they were uncomfortable. I tried many different frames. I found ones with those little feet that sit on your nose and make indents very uncomfortable. Extra light (read: extra expensive) frameless ones were better. All plastic ones were the most comfortable. But when I wanted to lay on my side with my head on a pillow and watch TV, I couldn't. Actually impossible to do that because my glasses would take the weight of my head and push it against the bridge of my nose.

It may seem inconsequential to some, but since you genuinely asked, that's the reason I had surgery. I found glasses damn uncomfortable. I'd compare it to a bra, just always aware it's there. I didn't tolerate contacts well enough to wear them for extended lengths of time.

Onto my surgery experience, I was advised against LASIK because apparently I have a tiny hole in 1 retina (doesn't affect my vision), and LASIK changes the pressure in the eye, which, combined with this hole, put me at a much increased risk of retinal detachement (still less than 1%, but too high for me). I was recommended LASEK instead, which is a similar procedure, but instead of making a flap they lift, they scraped away enough cells to laser straight through. Then the cells regrow.

This was apparently a safer procedure (according to my doctor) because it didn't involve the pressure change, and the lack of flap reduced the risk of infection. The downside is the pain. Scratching so many cells off your eye hurts as much as it sounds. Obviously I had full anaestic during - I didn't feel a thing on my eyeball (although the clip holding my eyelids open was painful).

Afterwards it was seriously so much pain. I've had gallstones (which I think ranks pretty high on the pain scale, and yeah, wow, I thought I was dying that time), and I can honestly say this pain was worse. It also lasted a long time. Probably a whole week of constant pain. Then pain most of the time, then just in the morning. I had a hideous stabbing pain (caused by dry eyes I think) on waking, every day for probably two years. My surgery was nearly 5 years ago, I still get the occasional morning stab (once every couple of months).

I said after the surgery if I knew how painful it was, I wouldn't have done it.

However, the amazing this about the human mind is that it does not 'remember' pain. You know how you can think back to a happy time and get a flood of happiness? You can't think back to pain and recreate it (under normal circumstances. PTSD etc obviosuly is something else). This lack of pain memory is apparently why people have more than one child, and it can be the only reason I occasionally think visiting a night club is a good idea.

Now that I can't remember the actual pain, only that it was very painful, I honestly think this was one of the best 'things' I ever purchased. Being able to see the clock in the morning is amazing! Although wow, I never realised how many cobwebs there were in my bathroom, or how dirty the grout was, since I never wore vision correction in the shower before!

I did a lot of research. I could have got it done at half the price at the mall. I called them and asked what would happen if I had a problem and they were closed. They said they would refer me to the local (NHS, I'm in the UK) specialist eye hospital. I looked the hospital up, and they had a private wing that does the surgery for a profit, will all profits being reinvested in the NHS eye service. I felt good about this - money going into the NHS and excellent doctors who I might have been referred to anyway. Cannot say enough good things about it, and if anyone in the UK would like the details, PM me.

TLDR - wasn't suitable for LASIK, had LASEK (allegedly 'safer'). It hurt like hell. I would do it again though. Do a lot of research.

OK, I just looked up LASEK and it seems it is synonymous with PRK?  I had PRK and I had no pain whatsoever.  The only thing I complained of was that I was (probably) legally blind for two weeks until the bandage contacts are removed.  The more I used the drops post-surgery, them more build-up I got on my bandage contacts.  I saw perfectly after surgery and then progressively worse and worse as the drops coated my contacts.  I couldn't read texts on my phone!  Once I got the contacts removed, I felt confident to drive, but not before.  Like you, I chose PRK for safety.  And the fact that all of the doctors and nurses I polled had done PRK instead of LASIK.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2014, 09:38:54 AM by Mrs. Green'stache »

klystomane

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #78 on: September 05, 2014, 11:17:46 AM »
One of the best things I have done for myself is LASIK.

I'm genuinely curious what specifically is so much better.

Only speaking for myself Beric01, but for me glasses weren't so much impractical (I can see how you can get around most things) but they were uncomfortable. I tried many different frames. I found ones with those little feet that sit on your nose and make indents very uncomfortable. Extra light (read: extra expensive) frameless ones were better. All plastic ones were the most comfortable. But when I wanted to lay on my side with my head on a pillow and watch TV, I couldn't. Actually impossible to do that because my glasses would take the weight of my head and push it against the bridge of my nose.

It may seem inconsequential to some, but since you genuinely asked, that's the reason I had surgery. I found glasses damn uncomfortable. I'd compare it to a bra, just always aware it's there. I didn't tolerate contacts well enough to wear them for extended lengths of time.

Onto my surgery experience, I was advised against LASIK because apparently I have a tiny hole in 1 retina (doesn't affect my vision), and LASIK changes the pressure in the eye, which, combined with this hole, put me at a much increased risk of retinal detachement (still less than 1%, but too high for me). I was recommended LASEK instead, which is a similar procedure, but instead of making a flap they lift, they scraped away enough cells to laser straight through. Then the cells regrow.

This was apparently a safer procedure (according to my doctor) because it didn't involve the pressure change, and the lack of flap reduced the risk of infection. The downside is the pain. Scratching so many cells off your eye hurts as much as it sounds. Obviously I had full anaestic during - I didn't feel a thing on my eyeball (although the clip holding my eyelids open was painful).

Afterwards it was seriously so much pain. I've had gallstones (which I think ranks pretty high on the pain scale, and yeah, wow, I thought I was dying that time), and I can honestly say this pain was worse. It also lasted a long time. Probably a whole week of constant pain. Then pain most of the time, then just in the morning. I had a hideous stabbing pain (caused by dry eyes I think) on waking, every day for probably two years. My surgery was nearly 5 years ago, I still get the occasional morning stab (once every couple of months).

I said after the surgery if I knew how painful it was, I wouldn't have done it.

However, the amazing this about the human mind is that it does not 'remember' pain. You know how you can think back to a happy time and get a flood of happiness? You can't think back to pain and recreate it (under normal circumstances. PTSD etc obviosuly is something else). This lack of pain memory is apparently why people have more than one child, and it can be the only reason I occasionally think visiting a night club is a good idea.

Now that I can't remember the actual pain, only that it was very painful, I honestly think this was one of the best 'things' I ever purchased. Being able to see the clock in the morning is amazing! Although wow, I never realised how many cobwebs there were in my bathroom, or how dirty the grout was, since I never wore vision correction in the shower before!

I did a lot of research. I could have got it done at half the price at the mall. I called them and asked what would happen if I had a problem and they were closed. They said they would refer me to the local (NHS, I'm in the UK) specialist eye hospital. I looked the hospital up, and they had a private wing that does the surgery for a profit, will all profits being reinvested in the NHS eye service. I felt good about this - money going into the NHS and excellent doctors who I might have been referred to anyway. Cannot say enough good things about it, and if anyone in the UK would like the details, PM me.

TLDR - wasn't suitable for LASIK, had LASEK (allegedly 'safer'). It hurt like hell. I would do it again though. Do a lot of research.

OK, I just looked up LASEK and it seems it is synonymous with PRK?  I had PRK and I had no pain whatsoever.  The only thing I complained of was that I was (probably) legally blind for two weeks until the bandage contacts are removed.  The more I used the drops post-surgery, them more build-up I got on my bandage contacts.  I saw perfectly after surgery and then progressively worse and worse as the drops coated my contacts.  I couldn't read texts on my phone!  Once I got the contacts removed, I felt confident to drive, but not before.  Like you, I chose PRK for safety.  And the fact that all of the doctors and nurses I polled had done PRK instead of LASIK.

It's similar to PRK. I believe the main difference is that the epi layer is removed completely in PRK, whereas in LASEK, it's merely pushed aside.

The main difference between LASIK vs PRK/LASEK is that LASIK involves cutting a flap.

It was the most painful recovery period ever. When people ask me about my experience, I tell them that I'm extremely happy that I had the surgery done, but I would never do it again.

Simple Abundant Living

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #79 on: September 05, 2014, 01:03:51 PM »
OK, I just looked up LASEK and it seems it is synonymous with PRK?  I had PRK and I had no pain whatsoever.  The only thing I complained of was that I was (probably) legally blind for two weeks until the bandage contacts are removed.  The more I used the drops post-surgery, them more build-up I got on my bandage contacts.  I saw perfectly after surgery and then progressively worse and worse as the drops coated my contacts.  I couldn't read texts on my phone!  Once I got the contacts removed, I felt confident to drive, but not before.  Like you, I chose PRK for safety.  And the fact that all of the doctors and nurses I polled had done PRK instead of LASIK.

It's similar to PRK. I believe the main difference is that the epi layer is removed completely in PRK, whereas in LASEK, it's merely pushed aside.

The main difference between LASIK vs PRK/LASEK is that LASIK involves cutting a flap.

It was the most painful recovery period ever. When people ask me about my experience, I tell them that I'm extremely happy that I had the surgery done, but I would never do it again.

Did you have bandage contacts?  I heard if those were prematurely removed that you would have a lot of pain.  You're the first person to tell me it was painful. 

dantownehall

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #80 on: September 05, 2014, 01:27:14 PM »
I had it done two years ago.  Not particularly Mustachian for me, as I had had the same glasses for 8 years and therefore spent $0 per year on eyesight, but still worth it in my opinion.

The part that was Mustachian was that I got a 5% discount for paying cash (literal, physical cash - most ?I've ever had in my hands at one time).

Beric01

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #81 on: September 05, 2014, 02:24:21 PM »
One of the best things I have done for myself is LASIK.

I'm genuinely curious what specifically is so much better.

Only speaking for myself Beric01, but for me glasses weren't so much impractical (I can see how you can get around most things) but they were uncomfortable. I tried many different frames. I found ones with those little feet that sit on your nose and make indents very uncomfortable. Extra light (read: extra expensive) frameless ones were better. All plastic ones were the most comfortable. But when I wanted to lay on my side with my head on a pillow and watch TV, I couldn't. Actually impossible to do that because my glasses would take the weight of my head and push it against the bridge of my nose.

It may seem inconsequential to some, but since you genuinely asked, that's the reason I had surgery. I found glasses damn uncomfortable. I'd compare it to a bra, just always aware it's there. I didn't tolerate contacts well enough to wear them for extended lengths of time.

Onto my surgery experience, I was advised against LASIK because apparently I have a tiny hole in 1 retina (doesn't affect my vision), and LASIK changes the pressure in the eye, which, combined with this hole, put me at a much increased risk of retinal detachement (still less than 1%, but too high for me). I was recommended LASEK instead, which is a similar procedure, but instead of making a flap they lift, they scraped away enough cells to laser straight through. Then the cells regrow.

This was apparently a safer procedure (according to my doctor) because it didn't involve the pressure change, and the lack of flap reduced the risk of infection. The downside is the pain. Scratching so many cells off your eye hurts as much as it sounds. Obviously I had full anaestic during - I didn't feel a thing on my eyeball (although the clip holding my eyelids open was painful).

Afterwards it was seriously so much pain. I've had gallstones (which I think ranks pretty high on the pain scale, and yeah, wow, I thought I was dying that time), and I can honestly say this pain was worse. It also lasted a long time. Probably a whole week of constant pain. Then pain most of the time, then just in the morning. I had a hideous stabbing pain (caused by dry eyes I think) on waking, every day for probably two years. My surgery was nearly 5 years ago, I still get the occasional morning stab (once every couple of months).

I said after the surgery if I knew how painful it was, I wouldn't have done it.

However, the amazing this about the human mind is that it does not 'remember' pain. You know how you can think back to a happy time and get a flood of happiness? You can't think back to pain and recreate it (under normal circumstances. PTSD etc obviosuly is something else). This lack of pain memory is apparently why people have more than one child, and it can be the only reason I occasionally think visiting a night club is a good idea.

Now that I can't remember the actual pain, only that it was very painful, I honestly think this was one of the best 'things' I ever purchased. Being able to see the clock in the morning is amazing! Although wow, I never realised how many cobwebs there were in my bathroom, or how dirty the grout was, since I never wore vision correction in the shower before!

I did a lot of research. I could have got it done at half the price at the mall. I called them and asked what would happen if I had a problem and they were closed. They said they would refer me to the local (NHS, I'm in the UK) specialist eye hospital. I looked the hospital up, and they had a private wing that does the surgery for a profit, will all profits being reinvested in the NHS eye service. I felt good about this - money going into the NHS and excellent doctors who I might have been referred to anyway. Cannot say enough good things about it, and if anyone in the UK would like the details, PM me.

TLDR - wasn't suitable for LASIK, had LASEK (allegedly 'safer'). It hurt like hell. I would do it again though. Do a lot of research.

Thanks! I appreciate your perspective. I can tell it's not for me, but good to learn more.

Quote
I found glasses damn uncomfortable. I'd compare it to a bra, just always aware it's there.

Interesting. How long had you worn glasses? I'm guessing I'm used to them just because I've been wearing them for 22 years now, or over 90% of my lifetime waking hours.

theadvicist

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #82 on: September 05, 2014, 02:41:14 PM »


Quote
I found glasses damn uncomfortable. I'd compare it to a bra, just always aware it's there.

Interesting. How long had you worn glasses? I'm guessing I'm used to them just because I've been wearing them for 22 years now, or over 90% of my lifetime waking hours.
[/quote]

Nah I don't think that's it- I got glasses as a child (about 11) and had lasek at, I dunno, 30, so I was certainly used to them. Do they never feel heavy on your face? My husband says I'm a wimp, sounds like he's right!

theadvicist

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #83 on: September 05, 2014, 02:45:30 PM »
OK, I just looked up LASEK and it seems it is synonymous with PRK?  I had PRK and I had no pain whatsoever.  The only thing I complained of was that I was (probably) legally blind for two weeks until the bandage contacts are removed.  The more I used the drops post-surgery, them more build-up I got on my bandage contacts.  I saw perfectly after surgery and then progressively worse and worse as the drops coated my contacts.  I couldn't read texts on my phone!  Once I got the contacts removed, I felt confident to drive, but not before.  Like you, I chose PRK for safety.  And the fact that all of the doctors and nurses I polled had done PRK instead of LASIK.

It's similar to PRK. I believe the main difference is that the epi layer is removed completely in PRK, whereas in LASEK, it's merely pushed aside.

The main difference between LASIK vs PRK/LASEK is that LASIK involves cutting a flap.

It was the most painful recovery period ever. When people ask me about my experience, I tell them that I'm extremely happy that I had the surgery done, but I would never do it again.

Did you have bandage contacts?  I heard if those were prematurely removed that you would have a lot of pain.  You're the first person to tell me it was painful.

With Lasek I didn't have contact lens bandages I don't think. I was on a lot of painkillers, but I really don't remember having them put on or removed.

klystomane

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #84 on: September 05, 2014, 03:16:49 PM »
OK, I just looked up LASEK and it seems it is synonymous with PRK?  I had PRK and I had no pain whatsoever.  The only thing I complained of was that I was (probably) legally blind for two weeks until the bandage contacts are removed.  The more I used the drops post-surgery, them more build-up I got on my bandage contacts.  I saw perfectly after surgery and then progressively worse and worse as the drops coated my contacts.  I couldn't read texts on my phone!  Once I got the contacts removed, I felt confident to drive, but not before.  Like you, I chose PRK for safety.  And the fact that all of the doctors and nurses I polled had done PRK instead of LASIK.

It's similar to PRK. I believe the main difference is that the epi layer is removed completely in PRK, whereas in LASEK, it's merely pushed aside.

The main difference between LASIK vs PRK/LASEK is that LASIK involves cutting a flap.

It was the most painful recovery period ever. When people ask me about my experience, I tell them that I'm extremely happy that I had the surgery done, but I would never do it again.

Did you have bandage contacts?  I heard if those were prematurely removed that you would have a lot of pain.  You're the first person to tell me it was painful.

I had bandage contacts for about 3 days. It was extremely painful on the second day. I basically couldn't open my eyes and ended up sleeping for 48 hours. I woke up in between to eat and use the bathroom (with my eyes closed).

...oh, one of my contacts fell out during the first night due to an eyedrop misfire (first time using eyedrops in 31 years) and that was OMFG I THINK I'M GONNA GO BLIND kind of pain.

But all in all, still going strong!

ender

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #85 on: September 06, 2014, 08:15:48 AM »
Hmmmm. The coating on my glasses (several years old) seems to be going out and I really don't want to have to replace it. I wear contacts most of the time, so I think I will schedule another eye exam and start the process to seriously do Lasik early next year (I want to pay using primarily an FSA).

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #86 on: September 06, 2014, 01:26:10 PM »
I've read through the posts here and wanted to share a word of warning from my eye doctor for young women (I couldn't tell if OP is a man or woman). She said not to do LASIK until after I was finished having children. At the time I asked about it I was 28 and engaged to be married. I wasn't seriously considering it because my vision hadn't been unchanged for the required two year period, and I was glad my doctor explained that pregnancy may cause vision changes. She said LASIK thins the cornea (?) so patients can only get one touch-up surgery and she didn't want to see me waste a touch-up due to poor planning.

I have -6.5 and -5.75 vision with astigmatism. I first got glasses at age 7 and have been in contacts daily since age 13 or 14. I LOVE contacts (or maybe just really hate glasses that badly). My husband says he knows I'm really sick when he sees me wearing glasses (outside of the ten minutes before bed or upon waking up) because I truly abhor wearing them. I hate the feeling of glasses on my face and the blurriness around the edges and not having peripheral vision.  I also really hate the way I look in them, even though I have nice frames.  I have the money for LASIK but I don't know if I'd ever get it done. Contacts don't cause me any trouble. Why mess with something that's not broke?  The people I've known who've had it done tell me it lasts for about 10 years at perfect vision then they need glasses. I would hate to get the surgery then not be able to wear contacts later in life. I'm hanging onto my contacts as long as I possibly can.

TomTX

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #87 on: September 06, 2014, 09:24:10 PM »
The people I've known who've had it done tell me it lasts for about 10 years at perfect vision then they need glasses. I would hate to get the surgery then not be able to wear contacts later in life. I'm hanging onto my contacts as long as I possibly can.

I'm at 15+ years post-LASIK and no need for any glasses or contacts yet.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #88 on: September 07, 2014, 07:37:38 AM »
Glasses are annoying, but one bad experience with an elective surgery (nothing to do with eyes) that was "routine" and done by the best doctor in my entire region...no thanks.

Rural

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #89 on: September 07, 2014, 07:20:12 PM »
Glasses are annoying, but one bad experience with an elective surgery (nothing to do with eyes) that was "routine" and done by the best doctor in my entire region...no thanks.


Not to mention: somebody sticking a pointy thing in my eye. No thanks.

tyd450

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #90 on: September 15, 2014, 02:22:54 PM »
Yes, I'd also love to hear if anyone knows about long-term studies, or if anyone here had LASIK awhile back, how it's stood the test of time for them.

So surprised by the overwhelmingly positive response! Just to clarify, I typically only take my contacts out one night a month--I throw the old pair away at night and put the new pair in in the morning. I wear them when I swim, with goggles for serious swimming, or just closing my eyes when I go underwater if I'm just horsing around. So a lot of this "see-all-the-time benefit" I already have because I'm blessed with very contact-tolerant eyes. Of course, it's not 100% the same (and who knows if I'll be able to get away with this forever?), but I don't anticipate it being the huge, life-altering change it was for many of you guys.

This makes me cringe a little bit. (I'm an optometrist) Please get LASIK. You are gambling with the only two eyes you have. Any pool or lake water that may get in your eyes while wearing contacts can cause serious problems. Google acanthamoeba...it's not a pretty picture, it can happen to you, and it often ends in a corneal transplant surgery. At the very least, you should be throwing away your lenses after swimming in them.

If you have the type of lenses you can sleep in for 30 days continuously, sleeping in them would be fine. However, from some of the other comments you have made, I would bet you are in Acuvue lenses. These are only approved for up to 6 nights continuously (if using Acuvue Oasys) and must be replaced every 2 weeks, and you are again gambling with your vision if you are overwearing them. Bacterial ulcers can develop and leave large white scars that block your vision. If you wait to replace your lenses until they start to make your eyes uncomfortable, your eyes are already damaged and susceptible to infection. Please take care of your eyes. The alternative is not worth it. You are definitely the type of person I would push toward LASIK. Check out TLC if you have one in your area, or ask your optometrist for a referral. Optometrists will refer to surgeons who use the best technology and have a very high success rate.

If you decide not to have LASIK soon, get in some lenses that fit your lifestyle better. Try monthly replacement lenses that are approved for 1 month of extended (overnight) wear and supplement with a box of daily disposable lenses for swimming. Sorry if this post sounds preachy. I am pretty passionate about eyeballs! Good luck with whatever you end up choosing!

I am considering LASIK and there is a TLC near me.  Why do you recommend them specifically?  Are they known for the best technology or something? I mean I am looking on yelp but I really don't know if you can trust yelp for something like this. 

tyd450

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #91 on: September 18, 2014, 11:39:07 AM »
After reading and researching quite a bit I think I am leaning towards PRK over Lasik.

aspiringnomad

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #92 on: September 19, 2014, 09:11:52 AM »
I'm scheduled for Lasik a week from today. After hearing a couple friends rave about it I looked into it and decided to take the plunge. I don't hate wearing contacts at all, but my reasons for getting it are 1) early morning exercise (won't have to fumble with my contacts in the dark while my SO sleeps), 2) minimalism, especially during travel (no cases, solution, or glasses to remember and carry around), and 3) my contacts and the solution I use are expensive so the cost of Lasik will be offset somewhat over time, plus I'll be using some tax-free HSA cash to fund the procedure.

However, I've had to wear glasses for the couple weeks leading up to this and it's really been a pain because I wore contacts 98% of my waking hours and these glasses are a very poor substitute (not quite the right prescription, loads of glare, no peripheral vision, fall off during sports, etc...). I'm now thinking that the most important thing for my eyes is that I avoid wearing glasses for as long as possible as I age and that Lasik might be a step in the wrong direction in that regard. So now I'm not sure what to do...I realize it's a personal decision but any thoughts on this concern?

EscapeVelocity2020

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #93 on: September 19, 2014, 10:18:09 AM »
I had LASIK 14 years ago, I'm 40 now.  I wore glasses all through college, but had a low prescription.  I actually liked wearing glasses when I started my engineering career - makes you look older and smarter.  And there's no cooler way to create drama than to put on your glasses at the beginning of a discussion, or sum up an argument by taking your glasses off and saying something, even if it is not profound...

All kidding aside, I'm a sporty person and was getting to the point that I needed contacts to play soccer and even jog.  Nothing is more boring than not being able to see distance as you put in 10 miles... 

I've been thankful every day that I put up with the discomfort and expense when I did.  I am safer on the road (not having to choose between glasses and prescription sunglasses that were outdated, and can read road-signs way better.  Not to mention all of the superficial reasons (e.g. looking younger at 40 is a plus).

Also, on assignment in Dubai, it was the first opportunity many of the team members (UK, Norwegian) had to get LASIK and many of them did.  They all seemed AMAZINGLY happy.  It was a joy to be around people that have recently had the procedure, once the initial light sensitivity and stabilization phase is over (about 1 - 2 weeks).

tyd450

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #94 on: September 19, 2014, 10:52:32 AM »
the flap thing scares me away from LASIK which is why I am leaning towards PRK.  I think the longer healing period is worth it to prevent more serious complications later in life.

klystomane

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #95 on: September 19, 2014, 11:00:47 AM »
the flap thing scares me away from LASIK which is why I am leaning towards PRK.  I think the longer healing period is worth it to prevent more serious complications later in life.

Agreed; my doctor told me the same thing.

MandalayVA

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #96 on: September 19, 2014, 11:06:15 AM »
I don't even see how a "good outcome" is so great. I wear glasses 24/7 anyway (I'm practically blind without them). They're part of my body and I'm used to them. What's so great about not wearing them? I've never understood contacts for this reason either. You have to put something into your eyes, AND it continually drains your wallet?

Lasik becomes worthwhile when it's cheaper than a pair of glasses (or perhaps the future value of the money I would spend on glasses). And if you still need any glasses at all, even reading glasses, doesn't that defeat the entire purpose?

Lasik seems more like an excessive luxury to me. I don't get it.

I've worn glasses since I was eight and like you said they're a part of my body; my day begins by reaching out for my glasses and popping them on my face.  I also have prescription sunglasses.  I have worn contacts in the past mainly so I could wear sunglasses but I have a healthy savings account through my job that paid for the prescription sunglasses (they're bitchin' Oakleys too).  LASIK's never interested me and the three people I know who had it done all had problems.  No, thanks.

aetherie

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #97 on: September 19, 2014, 11:11:15 AM »
I'm scheduled for Lasik a week from today. After hearing a couple friends rave about it I looked into it and decided to take the plunge. I don't hate wearing contacts at all, but my reasons for getting it are 1) early morning exercise (won't have to fumble with my contacts in the dark while my SO sleeps), 2) minimalism, especially during travel (no cases, solution, or glasses to remember and carry around), and 3) my contacts and the solution I use are expensive so the cost of Lasik will be offset somewhat over time, plus I'll be using some tax-free HSA cash to fund the procedure.

However, I've had to wear glasses for the couple weeks leading up to this and it's really been a pain because I wore contacts 98% of my waking hours and these glasses are a very poor substitute (not quite the right prescription, loads of glare, no peripheral vision, fall off during sports, etc...). I'm now thinking that the most important thing for my eyes is that I avoid wearing glasses for as long as possible as I age and that Lasik might be a step in the wrong direction in that regard. So now I'm not sure what to do...I realize it's a personal decision but any thoughts on this concern?

Lasik will not make you more or less likely to need reading glasses when you hit middle age. Until then, you get to be free of both glasses and contacts. Why would that be a step in the wrong direction?

For what it's worth, my experience with getting Lasik at 21 (9 months ago now) has been very positive. Some issues with dryness, easily fixed with drops. And my vision is fantastic.

aspiringnomad

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #98 on: September 19, 2014, 11:42:02 AM »
I'm scheduled for Lasik a week from today. After hearing a couple friends rave about it I looked into it and decided to take the plunge. I don't hate wearing contacts at all, but my reasons for getting it are 1) early morning exercise (won't have to fumble with my contacts in the dark while my SO sleeps), 2) minimalism, especially during travel (no cases, solution, or glasses to remember and carry around), and 3) my contacts and the solution I use are expensive so the cost of Lasik will be offset somewhat over time, plus I'll be using some tax-free HSA cash to fund the procedure.

However, I've had to wear glasses for the couple weeks leading up to this and it's really been a pain because I wore contacts 98% of my waking hours and these glasses are a very poor substitute (not quite the right prescription, loads of glare, no peripheral vision, fall off during sports, etc...). I'm now thinking that the most important thing for my eyes is that I avoid wearing glasses for as long as possible as I age and that Lasik might be a step in the wrong direction in that regard. So now I'm not sure what to do...I realize it's a personal decision but any thoughts on this concern?

Lasik will not make you more or less likely to need reading glasses when you hit middle age. Until then, you get to be free of both glasses and contacts. Why would that be a step in the wrong direction?

For what it's worth, my experience with getting Lasik at 21 (9 months ago now) has been very positive. Some issues with dryness, easily fixed with drops. And my vision is fantastic.

I'm 32 so about a decade away from middle age. I guess my concern is that Lasik would make me less able to use contacts when my vision does deteriorate. Perhaps irrational and I'm just a little nervous about the whole thing having read some cautionary tales in this thread.

aetherie

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Re: Should I get LASIK?
« Reply #99 on: September 19, 2014, 12:07:37 PM »
I'm scheduled for Lasik a week from today. After hearing a couple friends rave about it I looked into it and decided to take the plunge. I don't hate wearing contacts at all, but my reasons for getting it are 1) early morning exercise (won't have to fumble with my contacts in the dark while my SO sleeps), 2) minimalism, especially during travel (no cases, solution, or glasses to remember and carry around), and 3) my contacts and the solution I use are expensive so the cost of Lasik will be offset somewhat over time, plus I'll be using some tax-free HSA cash to fund the procedure.

However, I've had to wear glasses for the couple weeks leading up to this and it's really been a pain because I wore contacts 98% of my waking hours and these glasses are a very poor substitute (not quite the right prescription, loads of glare, no peripheral vision, fall off during sports, etc...). I'm now thinking that the most important thing for my eyes is that I avoid wearing glasses for as long as possible as I age and that Lasik might be a step in the wrong direction in that regard. So now I'm not sure what to do...I realize it's a personal decision but any thoughts on this concern?

Lasik will not make you more or less likely to need reading glasses when you hit middle age. Until then, you get to be free of both glasses and contacts. Why would that be a step in the wrong direction?

For what it's worth, my experience with getting Lasik at 21 (9 months ago now) has been very positive. Some issues with dryness, easily fixed with drops. And my vision is fantastic.

I'm 32 so about a decade away from middle age. I guess my concern is that Lasik would make me less able to use contacts when my vision does deteriorate. Perhaps irrational and I'm just a little nervous about the whole thing having read some cautionary tales in this thread.

It's fine to be nervous, obviously. Can you call your doctor, the one you're scheduled with, and ask them any questions you have? I was never told that I would be less able to use contacts if I needed them, but I don't expect to need them. Anyway, as I understand it, the deterioration that usually happens in your 40s/50s is in your close-range vision, hence reading glasses. You wouldn't want to wear contacts for that, unless you planned on never looking up from your book!