Since Lasik was approved by the FDA in the mid-1990’s, it is a common procedure and a great alternative to glasses and or contact lenses. Thus, many people who relied on glasses or contact lenses to see, now see comfortably all day. It is common to hear the statement, “I had Lasik 10-15 years ago and see just fine, so I have not had my eyes checked”. Often, it is not until a health change or reaching the mid-forties, when reading vision starts to change, does one decide to have their eyes checked. Many ask if it was necessary since they have enjoyed good vision for many years. However, even after Lasik, annual eye exams are recommended.
Lasik changes the shape of the cornea. Nearsighted eyes receive a treatment to flatten the cornea and farsighted eyes receive a treatment to steepen the cornea. Astigmatism can also be corrected with Lasik by an additional flattening of the specific astigmatic area of the cornea. Over time, post-Lasik eyes may have regression in which the cornea changes shape, steepening or flattening, which creates vision changes. It is also at this point that many post-Lasik patients start thinking about scheduling an eye exam again.
If many years have gone by after Lasik, a person may have vision, eye and systemic conditions go unnoticed. Some of these issues include glaucoma, macular degeneration, cataracts, hypertension, diabetes, retinal thinning and retinal holes. All of these can lead to vision loss and are detectable in a comprehensive annual eye exam. If it has been many years since having Lasik and an eye exam, please get your eyes checked! We want you to enjoy clear and healthy vision now and in the future!