How long after LASIK?
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ScotS244
December 20, 2004
Member since 01/29/2004 🔗
122 posts
Has anyone here had laser eye surgery and if so, how long did the doc tell you to wait before resuming athletic activity after the procedure? Going under the laser on Jan. 10th, so I'll be skiing with the specs a few times before then. I'm hoping 17 days is enough time to heal because I need my eyes to be ready for JH!
Coach13
December 20, 2004
Member since 12/16/2003 🔗
56 posts
I did the LASIK thing about 3 years ago and it took me about 7-10 days to return to normal activity, so you should be fine. One word of advice: use your artif. tears pretty regularly even if your eyes don't feel dry. Once they're dry, they'll be real uncomfortable until you get them hydrated again.
skidmo
December 20, 2004
Member since 10/10/2003 🔗
32 posts
I agree, 7-10 days should be fine, especially if you're wearing goggles. Avoid the hot tubs though as you would probably increase the risk of infection significantly. Obviously, you should ask your doctor for his/her advice. Skiing after LASIK is so much more enjoyable than skiing with contacts or glasses.
ScotS244
December 21, 2004
Member since 01/29/2004 🔗
122 posts
Thanks guys! I can't wait. Not having to deal with contacts or glasses ever again is going to be sweet.
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kennedy
December 21, 2004
Member since 12/8/2001 🔗
792 posts
Yep it is the greatest thing since sliced bread. Might want some decent shades for those blue sky days though. The light reflecting off the snow will be hard on your eyes until they become a little less light sensitive.
Coach13
December 21, 2004
Member since 12/16/2003 🔗
56 posts
Quote:

Yep it is the greatest thing since sliced bread. Might want some decent shades for those blue sky days though. The light reflecting off the snow will be hard on your eyes until they become a little less light sensitive.




That's definitely a good point. I had forgotten how light sensitive my eyes were for a good while after the procedure.
bawalker
December 21, 2004
Member since 12/1/2003 🔗
1,547 posts
This is actually a good topic... one that I've been wanting to learn more about. Currently I wear glasses and am nearsighted. I can see 6"-12" infront of me perfect and anything past that is a blur. I have read up on the proceedure where they delicately slice the outerlayer of the eye back, perform the laser surgery, lay that piece of eye back on top and then it's over.

My question to those of you who had this done. Have you experienced any negative side affects most notably the blurry vision for night driving? Have your eyes become more light sensitive overall? (Mine are ALREADY insanely light sensitive) Are eyedrops mandantory for the rest of your life after having the surgery... or just for a certain amount of weeks afterwards? Is your new vision 20/20, or fairly close?
Murphy
December 21, 2004
Member since 09/13/2004 🔗
618 posts
Bawalker,

I'm in the same boat as you. My max focal length is about 4". I was told several years back that I shouldn't expect to have 20/20 vision if I got it. Not sure where the technology is today but extremely near-sighted people may still have to wear glasses after the surgery.
Coach13
December 21, 2004
Member since 12/16/2003 🔗
56 posts
bawalker

Obviously everyone's a little different as to how they react and recover, but I'll say this. I know about 30 people who have had this done and know of no one that has experienced long term problems with the procedure. One friend required an "adjustment" (kind of like a re-do) to get his vision just right after the initial, but other than that everybody I know is happy.

My eyes were very light sensitive before the procedure and got worse for the first few weeks, but nothing long term. Normally you only need to take the drops for about a month, more or less. My right eye was 20/60 pre op and my left was 20/240 pre op. Now my right is 20/15 and my left is 20/20.

My only regret was not doing it sooner.
Packyderm1
December 21, 2004
Member since 11/8/1999 🔗
36 posts
Are there any other side effects of the procedure? I've heard about things like halos around lights when driving at night, but that was a while ago. I would love to be able to ditch the contacts/glasses especially when skiing or playing other sports, so any other recommendations or info would be appreciated.
Coach13
December 21, 2004
Member since 12/16/2003 🔗
56 posts
Quote:

Are there any other side effects of the procedure? I've heard about things like halos around lights when driving at night, but that was a while ago.




I did experience kind of a "starburst" effect for the first couple of nights when I drove. This only occurred if I looked directly into the oncoming lights, which I learned quickly not to do. Again, this went away in a couple of days.
bawalker
December 21, 2004
Member since 12/1/2003 🔗
1,547 posts
What is the cost of this proceedure, does insurance cover it, and who all are some of the doctors you all used down in the northern VA area? I'm contemplating this, but unless it's covered by insurance I won't be doing it anytime too soon. I do have glasses and have worn then since I was 5 so it's not really a big deal at all for me for winter sports. Now basketball and swimming are another thing all together.
Jim
December 22, 2004
Member since 11/22/1999 🔗
317 posts
First things first - I have NOT had Lasik done. I did, however, research it pretty thoroughly. The procedure involves cutting the lens of the eye, folding it back and using a high intensity laser beam to reshape the cornea. The lens is then folded back and the natural moistness of the eyeball keeps it in place (i.e., no stitches). In about 3% to 5%, patients have complained of diminished night vision or "starburst" patterns around lights or similar symptoms. A smaller percentage reported worse vision or complications to the extent that their eye sight was permanently damaged - again, however, this was less than 3%. Accordingly, your chances of successful surgery (are in the range of 95% to 97% with odds being better if your surgery is performed by a doctor with lots of experience in the procedure).

In my case, with correction in the -1.75 and -2.00 range, it wasn't worth the $3,000 for both eyes to me (my insurance will not cover). Plus, in my profession, glasses help portray a certain sense of competence on the job. Further, as I age, I've been warned that I will need glasses for farsightedness due to normal aging. For me, disposable contacts do just fine for skiing, are cheaper, and are not permanent. However, each person has to decide this for themselves. With the procedures in laser correction improving all the time, the key is to find a doctor that has done this surgery many many times (practice makes perfect!). Its worth doing your homework and asking around.

Good luck to all those that decide to go forward. FWIW, many of my friends have had the surgery and not one has come out unhappy. For me, its simply an economic issue and a fear that I chose not to address.
skidmo
December 22, 2004
Member since 10/10/2003 🔗
32 posts
As noted above, it is surgery and there are risks. Of course, there are also risks associated with wearing contacts. After LASIK, I didn't see halos. My worst side effect was extreme sensitivity to lights for the first 12 hours or so, and then a little extra sensitivity for another day or so. Friends of mine who had LASIK had virtually no light sensitivity. I barely used artificial tears, while my friends who had it done had to use them for a month. In short, there's no way to predict what you will encounter in the short term. If you go the route, don't save the dollars. Go to a top shop and insist on having the top doctor do the procedure. In Virginia, see Dr. Rajpal at See Clearly also known as Washington Laser Center. Another great choice is Mark Whitten in Rockville Maryland. You will likely pay more to have these surgeons do your procedure but, last time I checked, these were the only two eyes I had. There are other great docs in the area, but these two are the probably the preeminent names in the area.
ScotS244
December 22, 2004
Member since 01/29/2004 🔗
122 posts
The cost of the procedure I've elected to take is just under $3000 for both eyes and this includes lifetime service. The lifetime service may come in handy since I have astigmatism which can come back over time but not as bad as its original state. The consultation you must go through is extremely thorough. There are different levels or kinds of laser eye surgery. After the consultation they discuss what procedure is recommended to achieve the best results. I was fully prepared to go the CustomVue route (most expensive), but they actually recommended the normal route because I didn't show extra sensitivity to bright lights and have very good night vision. As far as paying for the procedure it will not be covered by insurance but I elected to use a tax saver health plan offered by the company I work for. A certain portion of money is taken out of every pay check before taxes and put into the account. When I made the elections for this last month I indicated I wanted $3000. So it's $125 out of every pay period. Having worn glasses and contacts since junior high the price is well worth it. Finally, I did a lot of research into where I would have this done. I looked at some of the big names but in reality these guys all work for clinics where LASIK, etc. is all they do. The technology gets better every year. LasikPlus, The Laser Center, etc. are all extremely competent and have over 99% success rates. These places also offer financing.
ScotS244
January 19, 2005
Member since 01/29/2004 🔗
122 posts
Well, last Monday I had LASIK done on both eyes. I couldn't be happier! Aside from the enormous pressure exerted on the eye by the tool that cuts the cornea (kind of like a cigar cutter thing) the procedure was cake. 20/20 vision the next day. Only three or four days of very minor irritation and now everything feels completely normal. I'm still not used to opening the eyes in the morning after sleep and seeing clearly. Modern science is amazing.
kennedy
January 19, 2005
Member since 12/8/2001 🔗
792 posts
Dr. Whitten is one of the best in the area, I didn't have mine done by him but I've heard good things. Mine was done at New View Laser Eye Center in Reston. Excellent service and follow up and touch up corrections for life. At the end they handed me a pair of wine glasses and told me these were my last set of glasses.

Anyway I was light sensitive for a while and on glary days a set of shades is pretty nice. I have no problems with them at all. My fiance wants to get hers done but she may not be eligible. My boss' wife was technically blind in one eye, had her eyes done at the same place and now she is 20/20 both eyes so the results can be dramatic.
ScotS244
January 19, 2005
Member since 01/29/2004 🔗
122 posts
I went through LasikPlus - Dr. Wills. The guy is very cool. Most of these places offer a free consultation to see if you are a candidate or not. It's worth the time to check it out!
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