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Questions to Ask Your Surgeon When Considering LASIK

If you’re considering LASIK, you’ll start with a consultation with a surgeon. They’ll assess the health of your eyes and your candidacy for LASIK. This consultation is also your chance to ask any questions you have about LASIK and your case.

We’ve outlined questions to make sure you ask your surgeon when considering LASIK.

  • Am I a candidate for LASIK?
    Your surgeon will map your cornea and consider your eye health. Ask specifically what makes you a good candidate for the procedure. If you aren’t a candidate for LASIK, you may qualify for other vision correction procedures, such as PRK.
  • What results can I expect from LASIK?
    While your surgeon won’t be able to predict the exact results you’ll get from LASIK, they can give you a solid idea of what to expect based on your prescription, eye health, and age.
  • Will I need glasses after LASIK?

Depending on your refractive error, your surgeon can give you an idea of the likelihood that you’ll need corrective lenses after LASIK. You may need reading glasses as you age since LASIK doesn’t protect against age-related farsightedness.

  • Will I need LASIK again in the future?
    Again, your doctor can’t predict the future, but they can give you an idea of likelihood based on your eye health, age, and prescription.
  • How should I prepare for the surgery?
    Your surgeon will recommend that you don’t wear contact lenses in the two weeks prior to LASIK.

Questions Related to Your Surgeon’s Experience

  • How many LASIK surgeries have you performed?
    Many doctors have performed thousands of LASIK procedures, and you can feel good about their level of experience.
  • How many of your patients have been satisfied with the results of their procedure?
    Most offices can give you a percentage of their patients that have been happy after LASIK as well as a percentage of patients that experience complications. They may be able to tell you the percentage of their patients that no longer need corrective eyewear following LASIK.
  • What side effects do you commonly see?
    The surgeon should fill you in on potential side effects after LASIK, such as halos around lights or dry eyes, and the timeframe when they normally see them lift. If a surgeon claims they have never had a patient experience a side effect, be wary. 
  • How do you handle enhancements?
    In some cases, patients may not achieve the desired level of vision correction after LASIK. Some offices will cover the cost of an enhancement surgery if it is needed within a certain timeframe of the initial surgery. It’s a good idea to get clear on how they handle unsatisfied patients before you sign up.

Questions Related to LASIK Technology

  • What type of laser do you use for LASIK?
    Discount LASIK clinics may use outdated technology, so it’s a good idea to ask about the technology used and why it’s good for your case.
  • Do you perform bladeless LASIK?
    Your surgeon will either use a laser or a blade to cut a flap in your cornea. Ask about which they’ll use for your procedure and why it’s better for your case.
  • What kind of mapping procedure is used?
    Advanced forms of LASIK, known as wavefront LASIK or custom LASIK, offer even more specialized mapping of the cornea. This can sometimes result in higher levels of vision correction.

Questions Related to Recovery From LASIK

  • What is the recovery timeline?
    In most cases, recovery from LASIK is quick. Most people return to normal activities the next day or within two days. Ask your surgeon what they expect in your case.
  • When can I drive after LASIK?
    You won’t be able to drive yourself home after LASIK. You’ll likely be given a mild sedative before the procedure and your vision might be blurry, so they’ll recommend that someone else drives you. Most people are able to drive the next day, but confirm this with your surgeon.
  • Should I take time off work?

You can likely return to work the day after LASIK, depending on the nature of your job. Ask your doctor what they recommend based on your line of work.

  • What type of follow-up care is included?

Most offices include follow-up visits in the total cost of LASIK. Your surgeon will want to see you to confirm your eyes are healing as they should and you achieved the level of vision correction you desire.

  • When will I see the final results of LASIK?
    You’ll see much better immediately following the surgery, but it can usually take up to six months to see the final results. Ask your surgeon what they think in your specific case.

Questions Related to the Cost of LASIK

  • How much is LASIK with your office?
    The price of LASIK varies greatly according to geographic location, the type of procedure needed, the technology used, and the surgeon’s experience. Confirm you are clear on the total cost versus the price per eye.
  • Do you accept my insurance?

If you have vision insurance, you’ll save money if you work with an in-network provider. While most vision insurance plans don’t cover LASIK, many offer discount programs.

  • What is included in the cost?
    Some discount clinics don’t offer comprehensive packages in their pricing and charge patients to the initial consultation and follow-up care. Get clear on exactly what is included in the price.

Are financing options available?
Most LASIK clinics offer some financing options to make the total cost more manageable for patients. The office may offer financing themselves, or they work with a healthcare credit provider. Ask about your options to make LASIK more affordable.

References

  1. Facts About LASIK Complications. (December 2018). American Academy of Ophthalmology.

  2. Association of Surgeon Experience with Outcomes of Femtosecond LASIK. (September 2013). Ophthalmic Surgery, Lasers, and Imaging Retina.

Last Updated September 7, 2022

Note: This page should not serve as a substitute for professional medical advice from a doctor or specialist. Please review our about page for more information.