What happens during the LASIK procedure?
Below are a number of videos explaining what will happen during your LASIK procedure so you will be well prepared on your big day! Be sure you have a driver on the day of the procedure and have cleared you schedule for that day and the day after - meaning you should take two days off of your regular activities for the procedure and recovery. You would have been in for your pre-operative evaluation 1-2 weeks before the procedure when we did extra testing and used long acting dilating drops that affect your near vision for up to 12 hours. For that appointment, you would have been out of your soft contacts (if you wear them) for a week or 1 month if you wore hard or gas permeable contacts.
STEP 1: Once you arrive at the LASIK center, you are given a Valium pill to relax you and your care after the procedure is thoroughly explained to you. You then enter the LASIK suite and your eyes are marked for the correction orientation. This is done because your eyes rotate slightly when you lay down. You then lay down on the bed and are rotated to the left under the first laser, the FS200. The next step is that a small cone is brought down gently on the surface of the eye while you look into the dark tunnel. There is a slight pressure sensation but no pain.
STEP 2: The laser then sends tiny air bubbles into your cornea at 120 microns below the surface to make the corneal flap. This cool laser is painless and takes less than 10 seconds to make a perfectly centered corneal flap. We do the right eye first and then the left.
STEP 3: You are then rotated to the center again and the area around your eyes cleaned. The second laser, the EX500, has already been programmed with your exact treatment plan to contour the shape of your cornea to provide a customized approach to clear vision. Again, we do the right eye first and then the left.
STEP 4: Once under the second laser, the EX500, the corneal flap of the right eye is gently lifted and the laser used to improve your outlook on life! You look at the green light during the cool laser treatment which lasts less than a minute and is also pain-free. The flap is then gently re-positioned and dried in place for a minute and a half.
STEP 5: We then do the same thing with the left eye. Before you know it the whole process is over and you are ready to go home for your nap. When you sit up from the laser your vision is much better than before without glasses but still slightly blurred, like looking through dirty glasses. When you wake up from your nap it is better again. The next morning you should be about 90% healed but still may be slightly blurry. Most patients can drive themselves to their appointment that day but healing varies so it is a good idea to have a back-up driver to get you to your appointment the day after the procedure.
You made it! Now you can enjoy the freedom that comes from LASIK vision correction.