Look Ma! No Glasses!

In Columns, Features, Moments with Michelle by Michelle Henson

Perfect vision–could it really happen in just a few short minutes with only a minor amount of discomfort? I’ve had glasses for as long as I can remember, and can never remember having perfect vision without the use of glasses. I have small eyes and could never get contact lenses into my eyes without losing them on the floor first. So, I always relied on my glasses for my vision, until recently. I decided to check into the Lasik procedure preformed at our local Spectrum Eye Institute. Laisk is considered an elective procedure,

because there are no medical reasons you must have the procedure performed. Lasik is used to correct near-sightedness, far-sightedness, and most astigmatism.

You are put through a number of tests that check your vision to see if you are a candidate for this elective procedure. If there is any doubt in the doctor’s mind, they can cancel the procedure at any time. There are certain risks involved that are minor compared to the benefits of the procedure, in my opinion. Upon arrival on the day of the Lasik procedure, you are given a mild sedative, a nurse takes your blood pressure, and places a cap on your head to hold back your hair. Then, you are walked back to the room where the procedure will be performed and placed in a chair that reclines.

Your head is placed on a pillow that has the air sucked out in order to hold your head still. Your eyes are numbed with an eye drop anesthesia; eyelid holders are placed on both eyes to prevent you from blinking. Then, one of your eyes is covered with a patch, and the microkeratome instrument makes a flap in the cornea that is reshaped under a protective flap. You may feel a little pressure and will be asked to look at a red flashing light.

In the treatment of near-sightedness, the cornea must be made flatter, whereas in the case of far-sightedness, the curvature of the cornea must be increased. When dealing with astigmatism, the cornea re-shaped by changing the mode of the beam. After the correction has been made, the protective flap is then placed where it bonds back. Before the procedure, the doctor asked me to look at a digital clock with out my glasses. Afterward, I was able to see the clock much more clearly. It is amazing.

You are then asked to go home and sleep for three hours. That is easy to do, because your eyes are very tired. Then, you wear protective shields until your follow up visit the next day, and then at bedtime for a week after. You also put in two eyedrops three times a day until they are gone. My vision is still adjusting, but each day it is getting better, which is normal. I am totally amazed with this new technology and can’t believe the wonderful results. The procedure is very costly, but there are payment plans available. I am totally satisfied and would recommend this procedure to anyone who wants to be free of all glasses and contact lenses.

The staff was very professional and made me feel safe throughout the whole procedure. That means a lot. They answered all of my questions and provided me with everything I needed to know before making the decision to have this elective procedure. The staff made me feel that it was my choice and I never once felt pressured to make a decision.