Quick Information on Laser Eye Surgery

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Black and white photo of an eye.Is Laser Eye Surgery for You?

If you wear glasses or lenses, you’ve probably wondered about this high-tech operation.

What happens? A thin flap is cut back from the surface of the eye; a laser then removes cells to reshape the cornea and the flap is replaced. This can treat short-sight prescriptions of -1 to -14 and long sight of +1 to +5, depending on the clinic.

Is it really over in 30 seconds? The laser bit is, but the operation can take 20 minutes, plus an assessment a week before and two weeks of aftercare. Beware of clinics offering same-day consultation and surgery.

Does it hurt? Most patients don’t feel a thing.

Can anyone have it? Some medical conditions or cornea types rule it out.

How long will it take to recover? Vision will be blurry for four to five hours. You must protect your eyes from water and avoid dust as recommended by your eye doctor.

Can anything go wrong? Scarring, dry eyes and visual distortions (glare or halo effects) are possible but rare. (Note: you may still not have 20/20 vision even after surgery.)

How much does it cost? It varies.

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