Step 1: Do your research.
The more you know about the different procedures available the better you can understand which choice might be right for your eyes. Look for information from trusted websites such as http://www.geteyesmart.org/eyesmart/ or http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/lasik-surgery/MY00375 .
Dr. Anderson Penno’s book Laser Vision Correction: What You Need to Know has information about who can safely have laser vision correction, what types of procedures are available, and how to choose a surgeon or surgery center. This book is available at http://www.amazon.ca/Laser-Vision-Correction-Anderson-Penno/dp/143926497X and in Kindle edition at http://www.amazon.com/Laser-Vision-Correction-What-ebook/dp/B003F77DV4.
Having the right expectations will make you happier with the results.
Step 2: Have a laser vision correction evaluation.
An evaluation, also sometimes called an assessment, is a complete eye check that includes specialized testing in order to find out if laser vision correction is a safe option for you. During this eye check a qualified eye care provider will usually give information about what options are available at that surgery center and tell you if you qualify for LASIK, PRK, Epi-LASIK or Intra-LASIK.
Sometimes serious eye conditions are detected during this evaluation and additional testing may be recommended. This evaluation also includes a medical history since there are some medical conditions like rheumatoid arthritis that may disqualify you from laser vision correction.
Step 3: Get a second opinion.
It can be a good idea to have a laser vision correction assessment at more than one center. This can give you more information about the types of surgeries available and also allows you to compare the style of care to see if it is a good fit. Some centers may be lower cost but may not offer as much face to face time with the surgeon. Other centers may have a higher cost but other features that are important to you such as specific technology or more individualized care.
Step 4: Talk to your friends and family.
It can help to talk you people you know who have had LASIK, PRK, or another type of laser vision correction. Keep in mind that each person may have variations in healing and that the recovery times may be different between different procedures. Ask them about their experience. Was the staff courteous? Were their questions answered? Were they comfortable with the surgeon?
If you have a trusted optometrist or other health care provider like a family doctor, talk to them too.
Step 5: Take some time to consider your options.
Rushing to make a decision because your wedding is coming up or you want to squeeze in surgery before your vacation may not be a good idea. You need to understand the healing process and book enough time to recover. For some procedures you need to book more time off than others. It is uncommon to have a complication but it is better to allow for the possibility of needing more time off ahead of time rather than having to cancel or change your plans if your vision recovery is slower than expected.
If you are a good candidate for LASIK, Epi-LASIK, PRK, or Intra-LASIK these steps will help you make the choice that is right for you and understand what laser vision correction can do for you.
For more information or to book a complimentary assessment, contact Western Laser Eye Associates.