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How do I know if I qualify for LASIK? 9 Things to Know About LASIK Candidacy

Undergoing LASIK surgery is an important decision that can significantly improve your visual perception and quality of life by correcting your vision. To determine if you’re a suitable candidate for LASIK, an advanced form of refractive surgery in ophthalmology, you need to consider several factors, from your eye health to the stability of your visual acuity. At Tersigni Vision, we prioritize a personalized approach, ensuring that each patient receives a thorough assessment and a clear understanding of what to expect from the procedure. If you’re curious about LASIK and wondering if it’s right for you, we invite you to schedule a consultation with our expert team to get all the answers customized specifically for your vision needs. Call Tersigni Vision today to schedule your LASIK consultation.

How do I know if I qualify for LASIK?

1. You’re the right age.

To qualify for LASIK, you need to be at least 18 years old, which is when eyesight has typically stabilized. The effectiveness of LASIK does not diminish significantly with age, allowing many adults, even those in their 40s and beyond, to achieve satisfying results. We take into account your age and eyesight stability, and will offer a tailored procedure to your exact needs.

2. Your eyes are healthy.

To qualify for LASIK, your eyes must be healthy. If you are dealing with conditions such as eye infections, severe dry eyes, or conjunctivitis, you will need to wait until these issues have completely resolved before undergoing the procedure.

At Tersigni Vision will do a full medical eye history with you to ensure your eyes are healthy and ready for LASIK.

3. Your vision prescription is stable.

A stable prescription is crucial for qualifying for LASIK at Tersigni Vision. Candidates should have had a stable prescription for at least a year prior to the surgery. If your prescription is still changing significantly at each annual eye exam, it may be advisable to wait until it stabilizes before considering LASIK. This is critical because the LASIK procedure corrects your vision based on your current prescription, and fluctuations in your vision post-surgery could necessitate further enhancements.

4. Your corneas are thick enough.

Corneal thickness plays a significant role in determining your eligibility for LASIK at Tersigni Vision. The LASIK procedure involves reshaping the cornea to correct vision, but if your cornea is too thin, it might not be possible to achieve the desired results through standard LASIK. Fortunately, advancements in LASIK technology now allow for the treatment of patients with thinner corneas than were previously considered suitable. Typically, the average corneal thickness ranges from 540 to 550 microns, and recent developments in laser technology have expanded the possibilities for patients within this range and slightly below.

5. You don’t have severe dry eye.

If you have dry eye syndrome or a history of dry eyes, recovery from LASIK may present additional challenges, but it doesn’t necessarily disqualify you from undergoing the procedure. As part of the pre-LASIK screening, we thoroughly assess for signs of dry eye. For those prone to this condition, our doctors often recommend treatments to manage and mitigate dry eye symptoms before proceeding with LASIK. Common interventions include the use of artificial tears and nutritional supplements, which can help stabilize your eye health and improve your eligibility for successful LASIK surgery. In addition, there are other modern vision correction procedures that may be more suitable for those with concerns about dry eye.

6. Your eye prescription is within certain limits.

LASIK at Tersigni Vision can correct a wide range of vision problems, but for optimal results, there are limits on how high your corrective lens prescription can be, including those for contact lenses. The excimer lasers we use are FDA-approved to address up to +6.00 diopters of farsightedness, -12 diopters of nearsightedness, and 6.00 diopters of astigmatism. It’s important to note, however, that these parameters might vary based on your specific eye health, the surgical techniques used, and the detailed evaluation conducted by our eye doctors and LASIK specialists. Each patient’s candidacy for LASIK is determined on a case-by-case basis to ensure the safest and most effective outcome. The best news is Tersigni Vision offers multiple LASIK alternatives if you have a high prescription including SMILE and EVO ICL.

7. You’re not pregnant.

If you are pregnant or nursing, it might not be the right time to undergo a LASIK evaluation at Tersigni Vision, due to the hormonal changes that can temporarily alter your vision and prescription. We recommend waiting until after your pregnancy and nursing period have concluded before considering LASIK. Once these stages are over, and depending on the findings from your initial evaluation, our eye doctors or LASIK specialists might suggest allowing a few months for your eyes to stabilize back to their normal condition before proceeding with the surgery. This ensures that the corrections made during the LASIK procedure are accurate and effective.

8.You’re generally healthy.

Qualifying for LASIK at Tersigni Vision requires not only healthy eyes but also overall good health. If you have any medical conditions that might hinder your body’s ability to heal, it’s crucial to discuss these with your doctor and inform your LASIK surgeon. Conditions such as autoimmune diseases like HIV/AIDS or lupus, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, depression, and chronic pain conditions including irritable bowel syndrome, fibromyalgia, or migraines may impact your suitability for LASIK. These conditions can affect how well you recover from surgery and could make LASIK less effective or advisable. It’s important to evaluate these health aspects thoroughly during your consultation to ensure the best possible outcomes.

9. You’ve done your research and are ready.

The final step in determining if you are a good candidate for LASIK eye surgery at Tersigni Vision involves doing thorough research and preparing yourself. It’s essential to educate yourself about LASIK, consult with your eye doctor, and visit a LASIK surgeon equipped with a list of questions you’d like answered. Being well-informed and proactive about understanding the procedure, its benefits, and potential risks will help you make an informed decision about whether LASIK is suitable for you. This educational component is a core belief at Tersigni Vision. If you’re ready to explore your options further and assess your candidacy for LASIK, we encourage you to schedule a consultation with Tersigni Vision. We’ll answer all your questions to help you feel confident about your procedure choice.

What do I do if I think I am a good candidate for LASIK surgery?

That’s great! If you are considering LASIK surgery and live near Portland, Oregon, Dr. Tersigni is here to guide you through every step of the process. Our comprehensive Advanced Ocular Analysis is the leading standard in assessing your LASIK readiness due to its breadth and depth. Dr. Tersigni will review your results with you and see if you are candidate for LASIK or a LASIK alternative procedure. Because we offer the broadest selection of procedures in Portland, you have the best opportunity to have the exact procedure you need. Your vision health is our priority, and we’re dedicated to providing you with all the information you need to make a well-informed decision. Take the first step towards clearer vision by reaching out to us for a comprehensive consultation. Our expert team is ready to assess your suitability for LASIK and answer any questions you may have. Contact Tersigni Vision today to schedule your appointment and explore how LASIK can enhance your quality of life.

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What if I am not a good candidate for LASIK? There are alternatives!

Many people have been told they aren’t a good candidate for LASIK and give up hope on vision correction procedures. There is good news. There are many modern LASIK alternatives like SMILE, PRK, EVO ICL, Refractive Lens Exchange/Custom Lens Replacements and other state of the art treatments that can be utilized when LASIK cannot. Many vision correction practices, who only offer LASIK, will tell you that you aren’t a candidate and send you on your merry way. It’s because LASIK is their only option. Don’t give up. There are many vision correction options at Tersigni Vision that can work safely and effectively. Tersigni Vision offers the fullest spectrum of laser vision correction procedures anywhere in Portland. Come get your Advanced Ocular Analysis and a consultation with Dr. Tersigni. He will educate you on the best alternative procedure options for you, even if someone told you aren’t a LASIK candidate.

FAQ’s About How Do I Know If I Qualify For LASIK

What eye conditions disqualify you from LASIK?

Certain eye conditions can disqualify you from undergoing LASIK, a procedure approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). These include severe signs and symptoms of dry eye syndrome, keratoconus, cataracts, glaucoma with high eye pressure, and any retinal diseases. At Tersigni Vision, a thorough examination by our surgeon will determine if any of these conditions affect your suitability for LASIK and if another procedure may be more appropriate.

Does having astigmatism exclude me from LASIK surgery?

Not at all. LASIK, a type of refractive surgery, can effectively correct astigmatism, a common refractive error, alongside other issues corrected by eyeglass prescriptions. Tersigni Vision utilizes advanced laser technology tailored to correct the unique imperfections of your eye, including astigmatism.

Can I get LASIK if I have very high myopia?

High myopia does present challenges, but LASIK might still be an option depending on the thickness of your cornea and the degree of myopia measured in dioptres. At Tersigni Vision, we assess such cases individually to ensure the safest and most effective outcomes.

Is there a minimum age requirement for LASIK?

Yes, generally patients must be at least 18 years old to undergo LASIK because the vision must be stable.

Can previous eye surgeries affect my eligibility for LASIK?

Previous eye surgeries, including photorefractive keratectomy, can affect your LASIK eligibility, particularly if they have altered the shape or tissue health of your cornea. Tersigni Vision will conduct a detailed assessment of your eye history to determine if LASIK is advisable.

How does pregnancy affect LASIK eligibility?

Pregnancy and nursing can cause temporary vision changes due to hormonal fluctuations. Tersigni Vision advises waiting several months after nursing has concluded to ensure your vision has stabilized before considering LASIK.

What is the upper age limit for LASIK surgery?

There is no upper age limit for LASIK, but older patients often have other eye conditions that might need to be addressed first. Tersigni Vision evaluates these patients on a case-by-case basis to ensure optimal outcomes.

Can LASIK correct presbyopia (aging eyes)?

LASIK cannot correct presbyopia directly, but procedures like monovision LASIK, where one eye is corrected for distance and the other for near vision, might be an option. Tersigni Vision offers consultations to discuss alternatives suitable for aging eyes.

What if my vision hasn’t been stable for a year?

Stability in your glasses prescription for at least a year is crucial for a successful LASIK outcome. Tersigni Vision recommends waiting until your prescription stabilizes to proceed with LASIK for the best long-term results. If you have any questions regarding this, don’t hesitate to call us and ask.

Are there lifestyle considerations that might affect my LASIK eligibility?

Yes, lifestyle factors such as engaging in contact sports or having a job that puts you at risk for facial injuries might affect your suitability for LASIK. Tersigni Vision evaluates these factors during your consultation to ensure that LASIK is a practical option for you. There are many procedures Dr. Tersigni can choose from to best meet your lifestyle.

Posted on June 3, 2024

Posted in LASIKTagged

Dr. Steven Tersigni is a refractive surgeon offering LASIK and five LASIK alternatives in the Portland, Oregon area. In addition to providing customized care to each of his patients, Dr. Tersigni is an educator and researcher He obtained both his medical degree and a master's degree in public health from Tulane University. He has been published in national journals and has been involved in 10 U.S. FDA trials.