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Refractive eye surgery - what to ask your doctor

Definition

Refractive eye surgery helps improve nearsightedness. If you are nearsighted, you have trouble seeing things that are far away.

Below are some questions you may want to ask your doctor or nurse.

Alternate Names

What to ask your doctor about refractive eye surgery; Nearsightedness surgery - what to ask your doctor; LASIK - what to ask your doctor; Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis - what to ask your doctor

Questions

Will this surgery help my type of vision problem?

  • Will I still need glasses or contact lenses?
  • Will it help with seeing things that are far away? With reading and seeing things close up?
  • Can I have surgery on both eyes at the same time?
  • What are risks for having the surgery?

How do I prepare for this surgery?

  • Do I need a physical exam by my regular doctor?
  • Can I wear my contact lenses before the surgery?
  • Can I use makeup?

What happens during the surgery?

  • Will I be asleep or awake?
  • Will I feel any pain?
  • How long will the surgery last?
  • When will I be able to go home?

How do I take care of my eyes after surgery?

  • What type of eye drops will I use?
  • Can I touch my eyes at all?
  • Can I take a shower or bath? Can I swim?
  • When will I be able to drive? Work? Exercise?
  • Are there any activities or sports that I will not be able to do after my eyes are healed?

What will my eyesight be like right after surgery?

  • Will I have any pain?
  • How soon before my eyesight gets better?

Do I need any follow-up appointments?

For what problems or symptoms should I call the doctor?


Review Date: 4/16/2009
Reviewed By: David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
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