If you are tired of wearing glasses or contacts to see clearly, you might benefit from LASIK, which is an acronym for laser in situ keratomileusis. This procedure involves the use of the laser to reshape the cornea so you can see better without the use of corrective lenses. If you are interested, you should learn the answers to some common questions.
Who Should Get LASIK?
The requirements for this procedure extend beyond just having bad vision, so not everyone is an ideal candidate for LASIK. According to MedicineNet, a good candidate is at least 18 years old and has had the same prescription for corrective lenses over the years. That means that if your vision is still changing, this surgery might not work well for you.
Your health is important when making this decision, too. In order to be an ideal candidate, you need to be free of autoimmune issues that include rheumatoid arthritis and lupus. In addition, if you have thin corneas, dry eyes, corneal disease, or cataracts, LASIK is not usually recommended.
Who Performs LASIK?
You need to find a trained, board-certified ophthalmologist who has years of experience performing this procedure. WebMD advises that you take your time choosing a doctor so you have a chance to find out what his or her complication rate is and what the pre-operative and post-operative procedures are. If you know anyone who has had LASIK and is happy with the results, ask which doctor performed the surgery so you can set up a consultation.
How Much Does LASIK Cost?
According to Consumer Reports, the national average cost for LASIK is about $1500 per eye, which means you can expect to pay at least $3000 total. Regular vision insurance rarely covers the cost, though you may be able to get a small discount due to your provider’s negotiated rate.
Some insurance companies do offer separate plans for LASIK, so it doesn’t hurt to ask about this option. You can also use a flexible spending account if you have one through your insurance provider. Finally, some eye centers offer payment plans that allow you to get LASIK now and pay off the cost over time.
Does LASIK Have To Be Performed More Than Once?
Since LASIK’s results are permanent, the typical patient only has to have it done once. However, if your vision changes slightly later in life, you may be able to get a touchup done that improves your vision once again. If you’re like the average patient, it will only take one surgery for you to get anywhere from 20/20 to 20/40 vision, meaning you can stop wearing glasses or contacts on a regular basis.