LASIK in Houston, TX
With LASIK eye surgery at Diagnostic Eye Center in Houston, you can achieve your personal best vision. We believe in providing you with the most advanced technology and the highest quality of care. We value each and every patient with individualized care from your first LASIK consultation to the very last day of recovery. With LASIK, you will be able to enjoy all of the events around the Houston area without the worry of eyeglasses or contacts.
Our doctors have years of experience in performing LASIK in Houston and taking the time to ensure all of our patients are informed and enjoy a comfortable visit at Diagnostic Eye Center. We will provide you with a caring and supportive environment for undergoing your refractive procedure. You will find our surgeons and staff to be some of the most helpful and knowledgeable in the field of LASIK.
How Does LASIK Work?
LASIK surgeons use a laser to reduce the curve of an extra-steep cornea and treat nearsightedness. Short eyeballs and flat corneas can cause farsightedness. Eye doctors may increase the corneal curve of the cornea for people who have this condition. If you have astigmatism or a misshapen cornea, your surgeon will curve or flatten the tissue. This change can increase focus for close-up and far-away vision.
Who is a Good Candidate for LASIK?
As great as LASIK is, it’s not right for everyone. This is why you have to have a LASIK consultation before you can have the procedure. LASIK is only approved for people with up to +6.00 diopters of farsightedness, up to 6 diopters of astigmatism, and up to -12.00 diopters of nearsightedness. Even if you fall within those parameters, your specific eye measurements may make you a better candidate for an alternative refractive procedure. Your eye doctor will discuss all of your scans and measurements and recommend the best procedure for you.
Other factors that go into LASIK candidacy include:
- Having a stable prescription that’s remained unchanged for at least a year
- Being 18 years of age or older, though most LASIK surgeons prefer patients to be in their mid to late twenties
- Having healthy eyes without any injuries or conditions like cataracts, glaucoma, or age-related macular degeneration
- Your corneas are thick enough
- You are not currently pregnant or nursing
- You are in good health and do not have any autoimmune conditions that would make it harder to recover after LASIK
These are only some of the factors that your eye doctor will take into consideration for LASIK candidacy. The only way to know for sure if LASIK is the right vision correction procedure for you is to schedule a consultation at Diagnostic Eye Center in Houston, TX!
Take our LASIK Self-Test
What Happens During LASIK?
Before you can even think about having LASIK, you must first qualify for the procedure. For this to happen, you’ll have a LASIK consultation with one of our doctors at Diagnostic Eye Center. The consultation allows your eye doctor to assess your eye health and medical history. This appointment will include vision tests to determine your level of near- or farsightedness. Your eye doctor will also measure your corneal shape and thickness to prepare for the procedure. Your corneas must be thick enough to have LASIK safely.
If you find out after your LASIK consultation that you’re a good candidate, the next step is scheduling your procedure. Once you know when you’ll have LASIK, you’ll need to stop wearing contact lenses in preparation. You may not realize it, but contact lenses temporarily change the shape of your eyes. You’ll need to stop wearing hard contact lenses at least four weeks before the procedure, or as directed by your doctor. Soft lenses should be discontinued at least one week prior to your procedure. This time frame prevents contacts from interfering with the shape of your eye.
The procedure will take about 10 minutes. Many patients are given a mild sedative like Valium to relax before surgery begins. You’ll then receive numbing eye drops to prevent you from feeling anything. Your eye will be gently cleaned and then held open using a speculum to keep your eyelids open. Your LASIK surgeon will then ready Diagnostic Eye Center’s state-of-the-art laser system, the WaveLight FS200 Femtosecond Laser, which creates the flap, followed by the WaveLight Allegretto Wave Eye-Q Excimer Laser to perform the treatment. Both Dr. Sanders and Dr. Salem are committed to providing the very best technology to their patients and take pride in having the most advanced lasers available for LASIK.
A computer directs the laser based on measurements taken during your LASIK consultation and final measurements from the day of your LASIK procedure. After reshaping the cornea, there’s no need for a bandage or stitches, as the flap heals on its own. Your surgeon will check your eyes again to ensure proper healing, and then you will spend about 30 minutes in our recovery room. During this time, your LASIK advisor will go over all postoperative instructions with you. This is a perfect time to ask any questions you may have. Ensure that you have a friend or family member who can drive you home, as you won’t be able to drive.
Thanks to the numbing eye drops, you shouldn’t feel any pain during the procedure. You may experience some discomfort when you get home, however, as the drops start to wear off. This usually lasts for approximately four hours after the procedure. You will be given eye drops to help during this time, but the best thing to do is rest with your eyes closed.
What Should You Expect During Recovery?
One of the definite advantages of LASIK is the recovery is quite short. With that being said, you should take it easy for a few days after the procedure. Rest and close your eyes for the first several hours after LASIK. Keeping your eyes closed limits dry eyes and irritation from dust or other particles. You should be able to return to work after a day or two. Most patients find they can start getting back to many of their normal activities within a few days. Avoid contact sports for four weeks. Skip eye makeup for one week or until your eye doctor says it is okay to resume. While healing, you may feel dry, itchy eyes or slight pain. You can take prescription eye drops and over-the-counter pain relievers as needed. You should not submerge your eyes in water for a month to avoid infection. This means no swimming in any bodies of water like pools, hot tubs, or any lakes, streams, or rivers.
Expect to return to the eye doctor within one to two days for an eye exam and sight test. You’ll need to return for several follow-up appointments over the next few months to ensure your eyes are healing as they should. Your sight may take three to six months to stabilize after surgery. You might have light halos or glare while seeing in the dark. Most people find that these go away on their own.
Although LASIK is permanent, it does not prevent your eyes from aging. That means you may still develop conditions like cataracts even after LASIK. You may also need glasses for reading as your near vision deteriorates with age. This is called presbyopia. Regular eye exams can ensure you have the correct prescription for changing visual needs.
Wondering if LASIK is right for you? Schedule your LASIK consultation at Diagnostic Eye Center in Houston, TX, today!
What are the Benefits of Having LASIK?
After LASIK, most patients have 20/20 vision or better! In the days after LASIK, your vision will only get better and better. Most patients experience immediate results.If you’re active, you’ll love not worrying about breaking your glasses or misplacing contacts. You can skip paying several hundred dollars a year on contacts or glasses since you won’t need them anymore after having LASIK. Even if you need glasses for reading or driving, your sight will stabilize after this incredible procedure. Many people also appreciate the aesthetic of no longer needing glasses. It’s easier to see facial expressions when you’re not hidden behind a pair of frames.
LASIK is also beneficial for people who work in physical careers. Welders, contractors, and military members enjoy the freedom of no longer having glasses or contacts to interrupt their jobs.
In these current times, you will also appreciate not having to deal with glasses fogging up while wearing a mask. Getting rid of contacts is also more hygienic, as you won’t need to touch your face to put lenses in everyday.
LASIK Technology at Diagnostic Eye Center
At Diagnostic Eye Center in Houston, we take pride in providing our patients throughout the Houston area with the latest technology in laser vision correction. Our blade-free LASIK center is equipped with the Alcon WaveLight® Refractive Workstation. The WaveLight’s revolutionary approach to laser eye surgery technology minimizes problems associated with older generation lasers, such as night vision reduction, glare, and halos.
Wavelight® FS200 Femtosecond Laser
Faster Flap Creation: Featuring the nation’s fastest flap creation times, the 200 kHz WaveLight® FS200 Femtosecond Laser delivers precise, predictable outcomes:
- Standard flap creation in approximately 6.0 seconds
- Automated vacuum control of the patient interface for consistent suction
- Minimized IOP and ocular distortion during suction
- Fast visual regeneration
WaveLight® Allegretto Wave® Eye-Q Excimer Laser
Built for Speed and Superb Outcomes: Featuring a 400 Hz repetition rate, the WaveLight® Allegretto Wave® Eye-Q Excimer Laser delivers one of the world’s fastest ablation times at only 1.4 seconds per diopter, resulting in consistent outcomes.
- High speed 400 Hz eye tracker actively tracks the fastest eye movement and verifies location before releasing
- Thermal optimized shot distribution helps minimize the potential for thermal buildup
- Crossline projector provides precise centration
Monovision is a treatment technique used for patients aged 40 or older who are affected by presbyopia. Presbyopia occurs when the lens inside the eye naturally loses its ability to focus on objects up close.
With monovision, one eye is focused to see clearly at distance, and the other eye is focused to see clearly at near. The brain learns which eye to use, depending on whether you are focusing on a distant or near object. Often times, monovision is implemented with contact lenses, but it can also be done with refractive surgery, such as LASIK, or with cataract surgery.
It is important to understand that monovision may not be the best option for everyone. You should discuss this option thoroughly with one of our doctors to determine if you would benefit from monovision correction. We generally recommend a brief trial period with contact lenses to be sure you are comfortable with monovision correction before proceeding with LASIK.
Common Questions About LASIK Eye Surgery
At Diagnostic Eye Center, we want you to have all of your questions answered before proceeding with any type of surgery. If you have a LASIK question that is not answered on our website, please feel free to ask your doctor during your consultation.
Other Refractive Procedures
While LASIK is the most popular refractive procedure performed today, some patients are better candidates for other vision correction procedures, such as Advanced Surface Ablation, Phakic IOL, or Refractive Lens Exchange. During your consultation, you will meet with one of our doctors to discuss your individual needs, as well as which procedure is best suited for your eyes.
Advanced Surface Ablation
Advanced Surface Ablation (ASA), also known as LASEK, is laser vision correction without making a flap. It represents a surgical advancement over photorefractive keratectomy (PRK), which was the original laser vision correction procedure first approved by the FDA in 1995.
ASA combines certain elements of both PRK and the more popular LASIK procedure and may offer some advantages over LASIK for certain patients. With ASA, instead of completely removing the epithelium, as is done with PRK, the flap of surface epithelium is loosened with a diluted alcohol solution and moved to the side. The surface under the epithelium is treated with the Excimer Laser, and the epithelial flap is returned to its original position, similar to LASIK. A protective soft contact lens is then placed over the cornea to make the eye more comfortable as it heals.
A Phakic Intraocular Lens (IOL), also referred to as an Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL), is a lens that is permanently implanted in the eye behind the cornea. It is called a Phakic IOL because the eye still has its natural lens. The implanted lens contains a refractive power which compensates for the eye’s nearsightedness and can correct refractive errors outside the range of LASIK, up to -20 diopters. A Phakic IOL may be the procedure of choice for patients with dry eyes or thin corneas that do not qualify for laser vision correction.
The first step is to create two small openings near the edge of the colored part of the eye (the iris) to allow the intraocular fluid to circulate around the lens. This is done one to two weeks before the lens implantation. The actual phakic IOL procedure is a short 15-minute outpatient operation. A small opening is created in the cornea, through which the folded lens is inserted. Once the lens has fully unfolded, the four corners of the lens are placed behind the iris. This makes the lens invisible to both you and others.
Refractive Lens Exchange
“I had my LASIK procedure done here and am so happy I chose Diagnostic Eye Center! From the initial appointment to the follow-up meetings, everything was perfect. I drove myself to the follow-up appointment the next day! Friendly staff and they made sure I was comfortable and understood everything. Flawless!”