Also known as nearsightedness, myopia is a refractive eye disorder that affects around 40 percent of Americans. This disorder occurs when light rays focus at a point in front of the retina instead of directly on the surface of the retina, causing objects at a distance to appear blurry and out of focus. While corrective lenses and glasses can correct myopia, refractive surgery allows patients to enjoy a better quality of life and 20/20 or better vision. If you’re looking to leave the glasses and contact lenses behind, here are a few refractive surgery options for myopia to consider.
Perhaps the most popular type of refractive surgery for myopia is LASIK (laser-assisted in situ keratomileuses). During a LASIK procedure, a trained eye surgeon cuts a thin flap in the epithelium or the thin layer of outer corneal tissue.
Once the flap is made, the doctor uses an excimer laser to reshape the cornea. This allows light to travel correctly through the cornea and the rest of the eye and hit directly on the cornea.
This type of surgery for myopia comes with plenty of benefits. Not only is the recovery time only one to two days, but LASIK patients also suffer from a few complications and offer to obtain 20/20 vision or better.
PRK, or photorefractive keratectomy, is the predecessor to LASIK, although the two surgeries are similar in the procedure. Unlike LASIK, however, PRK involves the surgeon cutting away and discarding the epithelium. An excimer laser is once again used to reshape the cornea, but after the surgery, a bandage is placed over the eye as the corneal tissue heals.
Because of the healing time, most PRK patients take anywhere from one to four weeks for their eye to fully heal. This surgery is a viable alternative to LASIK, especially for patients who have a thin cornea that cannot withstand LASIK surgery.
Refractive Surgery Options for Astigmatism and Hyperopia
Myopia isn’t the only common eye disorder. Over 8 percent of Americans suffer from hyperopia, or farsightedness, while astigmatism in Americans numbers around 33 percent of the population. If you suffer from one of these disorders, all is not lost. Like myopia, these two conditions can benefit from contact lenses and glasses, although refractive surgery is the only surefire way to eliminate the problem altogether.
Myopia is a disorder that can affect your daily life and career. But with the proper refractive surgery option, you can rid yourself of poor vision forever. Contact us today to see which refractive surgery solution is ideal for you.
The only way to know what refractive surgery options are good for you is to have a consultation with Dr. Alexandra Chebil. She is sought after as an Orange County Ophthalmologist that provides personalized, meticulous care to each and every patient in her private Irvine Lasik practice.