To understand Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis or LASIK, the first thing that we need to remember is that it is a corrective procedure. It cannot prevent any visual degeneration.
The procedure itself can correct several visual abnormalities.
Some of them are:
- myopia or nearsightedness
- hyperopia or farsightedness
- astigmatism- a visual disturbance caused by an irregularly shaped cornea.
LASIK uses a laser to carve the cornea and reform it into a shape that corrects visual errors. It cannot, however, correct cataracts and glaucoma.
We got all of those cleared out of the way. Let us discuss the prognostication of the surgery.
Does It Last Forever?
The quickest answer to this question is YES. The procedure can last for a long time, even for a lifetime. However, just like any other surgery, this depends on several factors.
Some procedures can go from 10 years to 20 years, if not forever. As stated before, it is a corrective surgery rather than a preventive technique. It means that it cannot save you from any future damage that might occur to your eyes.
Much like any other part of your body, the cornea of your eye can suffer from age-associated degeneration. These damages can inflict additional remodelling of your corneal shape and modify your corrected cornea. Doctors may recommend enhancement surgery to ensure that the patient’s clear vision comes back.
Several factors can affect the longevity of the procedure. Overall, an interaction of these factors will modify the time your vision remains repaired.
First of all, is age. Generally, experts recommend getting the surgical procedure in your mid-20s. It is the age that is associated with the best outcomes from the technique. The eyes are still healthy and can hold the shape resulting from the surgery. As you grow older, it becomes harder for you to recover. However, surgery remains an option for the elderly. People aged 40 and older may still require using corrective lenses or glasses even after undergoing the procedure.
Second is the existence of other eye conditions like glaucoma, cataracts, and macular degeneration. All of the three diseases mentioned cannot improve with laser. Other surgical options are available for them. Discuss them with your doctor.
The third and last is the state of your eye years following the surgery. As stated before, the procedure is corrective. Post-procedure, there are still plenty of things that can affect your eye. The condition you subject yourself to can cause it to acquire damage and go back to its blurry condition.