The Light Of The Body Is The Eye: LASIK Gives You Back the Natural Vision

It’s adieu to the irritation caused by the contact lenses or the cumbersome glasses which keep falling off your face in a busy crowd! Millions of individuals across the globe have adopted LASIK surgery to get back their natural vision.

LASIK stands for Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis and is a refractive surgery procedure that permanently changes the shape of the cornea, the clear covering of the front of the eye (also known as the lens of the eye), using an excimer laser. During the procedure, computer-generated pulses vaporize a portion of the stroma, the middle-section of the cornea. The precise surgical process on the corneal tissue can cure any imperfections of the human eye, myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness) and/or astimagtism (an image distortion on the retina caused by faults in the cornea).

Photorefractive Keratectomy or PRK was the first surgical procedure using laser to fix imperfections of the human eye. Over the years, LASIK has gained popularity as the operating procedure of choice for ophthalmologists. The major difference between the two procedures revolves around how the laser is used to sculpt the eye. In PRK, the topmost layer of the cornea is scraped to operate on the stroma. In LASIK, laser is used to cause an incision in the stroma and reshape the corneal tissue. Since LASIK treats the inner tissue of the cornea, there is lesser area to heal, lower risk of scarring and corneal haze, lesser post-operative pain and normal vision is revived within a small time period.

The LASIK procedure has become more popular as an effective cosmetic surgery option to get rid of the cumbersome glasses or contact lenses. Vocational reasons, such as for professionals in various sports, army, navy or pilots, acting or modeling, have also increased the popularity of this refractive procedure. This procedure also relieves individuals who are allergic to using contact lenses, resulting in watering and redness of the eyes. The simple LASIK procedure enables you to walk-in and out within a couple of hours from the surgical centre. Patients can resume normal life within 2 to 3 days of the refractive surgery.

There are however certain caveats to be considered before you go for your LASIK procedure. It is a big NO-NO for you if you are under the age of 18. Consider discussing any additional risks with your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, suffering from diseases due to hormonal fluctuations, refractive instability and participate regularly in contact sports which cause regular blows to the face / eyes. Also, if you are on medications which might linger wound healing, such as immunodeficiency states (eg, HIV), give it a second-thought by discussing with your physician. Make an informed decision before proceeding for LASIK, considering that a minimum percentage of patients have suffered from unforeseen complications after the surgery.

Dr. RP Center for Opthalmic Sciences, AIIMS, New Delhi, was the first Government Institution in India to conduct excimer laser surgery in the country. Specialist LASIK surgery centers have sprouted in the major metros of the country, but the Laser Eye Surgery Center located in Mumbai and Manipal Hospital, Bangalore, are some of the more renowned ones in the country. A newer technology has developed known as C-LASIK or customized LASIK, which provides a more precise way of treating the distortions in the eye giving the patient a much better quality of post-operative vision. India offers one of the best ophthalmic surgeons in the world at the cheapest prices. Since this is considered as a cosmetic surgery, most of the insurance companies in US do not reimburse the high costs of the surgery. It could cost up to Rs.2 lakhs in US, as compared to Rs.20,000 to Rs.30,000 in Delhi for the conventional LASIK procedure. Even the enhanced C-LASIK procedure will cost anywhere in the range of Rs.30,000 to Rs.36,000. The reduced costs have caused a huge influx of foreigners coming to India for the refractive surgery. With the availability of improved technologies and trained individuals, LASIK has offered the flexibility of leading an energetic, glass-free lifestyle. Let the world know you “With eyes that look’d into the very soul…Bright – and as black and burning as a coal”…

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