The advantages and disadvantages of LASIK

After providing a general indication of the possible risks or complications of surgery, let us now take a look at the advantages of surgery, which heavily outweigh the extremely minor and always resolvable problems. As repeatedly pointed out, this surgery is totally painless because in the very first phase, preparation, the part to be operated on is anaesthetized by using anaesthetic eye drops. Generally the operation is done at a walk-in facility. A less hasty procedure allows you to do first one eye and then the other eye after a week. Nonetheless, doing both eyes in one session involves no risk.

After the operation, the patient may experience a slight discomfort but no pain, and sight recovery occurs within hours, though it takes a few weeks for it to fully stabilise.

LASIK is one of the most widely used surgical treatments, even at an international level, to correct severe myopia, medium-severe astigmatism and hypermetropia.
However, if it is not sufficient, you can assess the possibility of PRK, which is similar to LASIK surgery but clearly with some substantial differences.

Here is a brief comparison between the two operations:

LASIK: medium or severe myopia, simple or severe mixed astigmatism, simple hyperopia or combined with astigmatism.

Advantages:
- pain-free during the procedure, though the patient may have a slight perception of the presence of foreign bodies in the eyes and/ or tolerable discomfort for a day or two;
- sight recovery is faster (1-2 days).

Disadvantages:
- it may involve some post-operative complications, though remediable. The worst risks – such as infections – are treatable and never irreversible;
- in cases where the correction was not perfect, though always a small percentage of the baseline values, it is more difficult to perform a second operation and it must be done several months after the first operation;
- more expensive than PRK.

PRK: also called "photorefractive keratectomy" is a surgical technique to reduce or correct the most common vision defects of slight to moderate severity. In this surgery lasers are used to "redesign" the cornea.

Advantages:
- easily implemented;
- total absence of operative risk;
- painless procedure;
- possibility of repeating the procedure if the outcome is not optimal;
- less expensive than LASIK.

Disadvantages:
- mild pain for a couple of hours following surgery. Regeneration of the cornea is actually quite painful and itchy, though this irritating healing process is indicative of a successful operation;
- restoration of good vision in two or three days until removal of protective contact lenses. The final repositioning depends primarily on the individual scarring and biological reaction, which is gradually controlled by the ophthalmologist and normally completed within two months.