What types of vision problems can be corrected with iLASIK?
IntraLASIK is a surgical treatment for nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism that reshapes the cornea to improve visual focus.
Who is NOT a candidate for bladeless iLASIK?
Traditional LASIK and bladeless iLASIK are not for everyone. Certain factors, such as the thickness of your corneas or the strength of your eyeglass prescription, determine whether or not you may be a candidate. That is why, before any vision correction is performed, Magill Vision Center’s team of eye care professionals will conduct a detailed examination to evaluate your candidacy. Based on the results of those tests, your doctor will recommend the vision correction option best suited for you.
What happens during a bladeless iLASIK procedure?
The surgeon begins by creating a flap in the eye’s cornea. During a traditional LASIK procedure, a microkeratome (a hand-guided surgical instrument that contains a blade) is used to create flap. However, advanced iLASIK technology utilizes a laser for this purpose.
After the flap is folded back, our surgeon uses the high-energy microsecond pulses of an excimer laser to remove microscopic layers of tissue and improve the curvature of the cornea. Once the treatment is completed, the flap is folded back into its normal position and begins the rapid healing process. No stitches are necessary because the two layers of the cornea adhere naturally to each other. The entire procedure generally takes less than 20 minutes.
Is bladeless iLASIK the same as the “customized” procedure I have heard so much about?
No. The term “custom” generally refers to individualized visual diagnosis with “wavefront” technology which allows for customized treatment with the excimer laser.
A bladeless wavefront iLASIK procedure makes it possible for our doctor to deliver an unprecedented level of personalization, safety, and precision with each patient’s procedure.
How do iLASIK results compare with those of traditional LASIK?
Clinical studies confirm that patients see better following bladeless iLASIK than following a traditional LASIK procedure. In general:
- More patients achieve 20/20 or better vision with bladeless iLASIK.
- Patients stating a preference preferred the post-operative vision of their iLASIK-treated eye 3 to 1 over the vision of their eye treated with traditional LASIK.
- Bladeless iLASIK creates fewer high and low-order aberrations thought to be associated with glare and halos at night.
- Compared with patients who have had a traditional LASIK procedure, bladeless iLASIK patients experienced a reduced incidence of post-operative “dry eye” symptoms.
- Bladeless iLASIK patients required fewer enhancement procedures.
- The precision of the iLASIK flap significantly reduces the incidence of post-operative induced astigmatism, as compared with a flap created with a microkeratome blade.
What kind of results can I expect after my bladeless iLASIK procedure?
Many surgeons may provide you with general results, but most don’t offer specific information about their results with people just like you …and very few are willing to put those results in writing.
After evaluating the results of thorough diagnostic testing, our surgeons provide their patients with specific written information that explains their likelihood of achieving 20/20 vision. These patients can see past results with patients who were treated for a problem similar to their own.
Whatever your level of myopia, hyperopia or astigmatism, our surgeon with furnish you with specific, written information about your likelihood of achieving 20/20 vision and how likely it will be that you will need an enhancement. No guessing…no generalities. Just the actual data you need to make an informed decision about your vision.
Is traditional LASIK safe?
Yes. However, an all-laser procedure like iLASIK reduces the risk of complications associated with the use of the hand-held microkeratome blade. This added safety has given many patients more confidence in choosing laser vision correction.
Is a bladeless iLASIK procedure safer?
Yes. When compared with traditional LASIK, the more precise iLASIK bladeless procedure has an enhanced safety profile and improved visual results.
Precise flap thickness is critical to a successful LASIK outcome. Bladeless iLASIK flaps feature a consistent thickness from edge to edge. This degree of accuracy is unprecedented in flap creation technology.
Some surgeons who do not offer bladeless iLASIK technology say that it is just a “gimmick” that makes it possible to charge more for LASIK. Is this true?
Our doctors are committed to offering their patients the most advanced technology available…they do not invest in “gimmicks” or technology of questionable benefit.
You may be interested to know that the United States Navy recently tested bladeless iLASIK technology to create LASIK flaps for naval aviators. Previously, LASIK vision correction was off-limits for these pilots because of concerns with vision quality following the procedure.
According to the Navy’s studies, a bladeless iLASIK procedure delivered better vision quality and faster visual recovery time (as compared to procedures that treat the surface of the cornea and those involving a mechanical microkeratome blade for flap creation). Recovery time is important to the Navy because these aviators must make frequent carrier landings to maintain their qualifications.
After reviewing the results of the study, the Navy reversed its policy and has approved bladeless iLASIK for correcting the vision of naval aviators. Soon afterward, NASA announced its approval of the procedure for its astronauts.
I am currently wearing contact lenses. Do I need to do something special?
Contact lenses cause subtle changes in the shape of the cornea.
Soft contact lenses should be removed 7 days before your examination (several weeks if you wear rigid gas permeable lenses). This gives the cornea time to relax and return to its normal and natural state before we measure its dimensions in preparation for your iLASIK treatment.
What should I expect during a bladeless iLASIK procedure?
After administering eye drops to numb the eye and a mild sedative to induce relaxation, you will be taken into the vision correction suite.
Your doctor will place a tiny mark on the cornea with water-soluble ink to ensure proper alignment.
During the first step of a bladeless iLASIK procedure, your surgeon will use an IntraLase laser to make a tiny, precise flap on the surface of the cornea. Then, using a computer-controlled excimer laser, he reshapes the cornea with high-energy microsecond pulses. After the desired shape is achieved, the corneal flap is replaced and the rapid healing process begins.
The entire procedure takes only a few minutes. The two layers of the cornea adhere naturally to each other once the flap is put back into position.
What happens then?
After the procedure, you will be given instructions and mediations to aid healing, as well as protective eyewear. Although you may experience an immediate improvement in your vision, your eyes will be sensitive to light for several hours, so you must have a driver on hand for the trip home. A long nap is recommended to promote healing.
What if I blink or move my eye during the procedure?
During an iLASIK procedure, a small lid holder will prevent you from blinking. You will be instructed to focus on a blinking red light, and the VISX Star S4 excimer laser’s innovative ActiveTrak™ technology will monitor eye movement in three dimensions. The laser will stop if the eye moves outside of the treatment zone.
Are there any side effects?
LASIK side effects are few. Temporary side effects may include mild scratchiness, dry eyes, glare or halos in low light conditions, as well as minimal discomfort.
Is bladeless iLASIK covered by my insurance plan?
As LASIK is considered an elective procedure, it is not covered by most insurance plans. However, budget-friendly financing plans with easy terms make bladeless iLASIK affordable. Our coordinator will be happy to provide details.
Considering the recurring costs of new contact and eyeglass prescriptions and solutions, the procedure may save you money in the long run.
Many employers offer flexible benefit plans that are an excellent way to allocate pre-tax income to pay for a vision correction procedure.
Will I ever need glasses again?
Most patients will not need glasses for distance vision. However, when you reach the age at which bifocals or reading glasses are normally required for close vision, you will most likely need reading glasses. This generally occurs at age 40 or beyond.
Who is NOT a candidate for bladeless iLASIK?
Traditional LASIK and bladeless iLASIK are not for everyone. Certain factors, such as the thickness of your corneas or the strength of your eyeglass prescription, determine whether or not you may be a candidate.
That is why, before any vision correction is performed, Magill Vision Center’s team of eye care professionals will conduct a detailed examination to evaluate your candidacy. Based on the results of those tests, your doctor will recommend the vision correction option best suited for you.
For Lasik information, call 843-216-2020
For Cataracts information, call 843-792-8100
New patients may call 843-792-1414
Established patients may call 843-792-8100
Representatives are available from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday