University Laser Vision Center
Potential Risks and Side Effects
Almost all people who undergo laser vision surgery notice a dramatic improvement in their vision and see well enough to reduce or eliminate the need for corrective lenses. Although the risk of having a serious vision-threatening complication is much less than 1 percent, the excimer laser procedure, like all surgical procedures, has limitations and risks. Some of the most common of these include:
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- Pain: There is generally no pain or discomfort. Very few
patients have pain after the procedure. If pain occurs it can be treated with
medication for one to two days. Most patients experience only some irritation,
which can be treated with moisturizing drops over the next several days.
- Infection: The chance of an infection is extremely low
(about 1 in 20,000). Even though the risk is low, it is important for you
to understand that an infection can occur. To prevent an infection, we take
extreme measures such as the use of strict sterile techniques and instrument
regulations, as well as antiseptic solutions to cleanse your eye before surgery
and antibiotic drops after surgery.
- Night Glare: Even before laser vision correction, everyone
sees some degree of halos or glare (you may have already noticed a fringe
or halo around headlights at night). After laser vision correction some patients
experience an increase in glare or halos at night. This effect depends on
your pupil size and other factors. Your surgeon can help you to understand
if glare or halos may increase after laser vision correction.
- Under Correction/Over Correction: Your measurements and
treatment will be performed carefully with the goal of excellent vision after
your healing is complete. Depending on your healing process, you may have
a small amount of focusing error remaining. With some patients, a second laser
vision procedure or a very mild pair of glasses or contacts can be used to
further improve vision.
- Loss of Sharpness: About 1 percent of patients experience
a small loss of visual sharpness. This means a patient may have difficulty
reading the bottom line or two of the eye chart.
April 25, 2007.
Please call University Laser Vision Center at 410-328-5933
for more information or to schedule your free consultation.