LASIK Risks: What Are the Odds Your LASIK Procedure Will Result in Complications?

July 20th, 2023

Are you considering vision correction surgery to help you see clearly? Laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis, more commonly known as LASIK eye surgery, can be a safe and effective option. More than 99% of patients achieve 20/40 vision or better, and 90% achieve 20/20 or better. LASIK isn’t always right for everyone, though, and as with all surgeries, there are certain risks of complications and side effects. Finding a skilled, trusted surgeon can put your mind at ease and help you experience a life free of corrective lenses. 

Why Choose LASIK? 

Given its many benefits, LASIK is one of the most common elective eye surgeries in the U.S. today used to help correct conditions and refractive errors such as astigmatism, myopia (nearsightedness), or hyperopia (farsightedness). Individuals who have no underlying eye conditions, like glaucoma, cataracts, or severe dry eye, and have had a stable prescription for the past year may be candidates for the procedure. 

Risks of LASIK Eye Surgery

Like every surgical procedure, there are inevitable risks of complications or side effects associated with LASIK. However, it’s important to first understand that complications and side effects are not the same thing. Complications refer to unexpected results that occur in relation to a procedure and add complexity to a condition, often requiring separate treatment. Potential LASIK complications can include infections, a dislocated or wrinkled corneal flap, or negative vision changes. Serious complications such as these are extremely rare and occur in less than 1% of all LASIK procedures, according to the American Refractive Surgery Council. 

Side effects, on the other hand, encompass unintended reactions to a treatment or procedure. Many patients experience common, temporary side effects of LASIK eye surgery, including dry eye, halos or starbursts around bright lights, light sensitivity, blurred vision, and glare (especially at night). These side effects generally improve over three to six months during the healing and recovery period. Additional treatment may be needed in some rare instances. 

Choosing the Right Eye Surgeon for You

An experienced surgeon will help limit the risks of LASIK eye surgery, answer your questions directly and completely, and inform you of any vision correction options that may be better suited for your unique needs and goals. When choosing a provider for your LASIK eye surgery, consider:

  • Experience of the surgeon 
  • Type of equipment and technology used, such as microkeratome or femtosecond laser
  • Comprehensiveness of the consultation
  • Your comfort level with the surgeon
  • Follow-up care plan and associated costs for additional treatments

Asking friends or families for referrals can be a great place to begin your search. Consider any patient testimonials and the credibility of the office, and prepare a list of questions to take to your consultation. Questions that may help you choose your doctor include: 

  • How much will the procedure cost, and are there payment options available?
  • Is follow-up care included in the cost? Does this include treatment for side effects or complications?
  • What should I expect before, during, and after the procedure?
  • Will I require any prescription medications at an additional cost?
  • Is there a lifetime guarantee for any required enhancements? Is this at an additional cost? 
  • Are there other vision correction options that may be better suited for my needs? 

Request a Free Consultation with ICON Eyecare

LASIK is one of the most studied elective procedures and has an extremely high patient satisfaction rate of more than 96%. The world-class doctors at ICON Eyecare are here to help you explore your options, assess risk factors, and see if LASIK eye surgery is right for you. Take our helpful LASIK self-test, and then request a free consultation today at one of our convenient locations across the Front Range.