Risks of laser eye surgery: what you need to know

Laser eye surgery is one of the most commonly performed elective procedures in the world. Yet, like all forms of surgery it comes with an element of risk.
It’s important to know that the risks associated with laser eye surgery are small, with fewer than 4% of treatments subject to complications. However, it is still very important to be aware of the potential complexities of treatment.


Possible risks of laser eye surgery

There are several common risks that you should be aware of before electing for treatment.
Further treatment required
Although the chances of needing further treatment are slim, it does still happen. Every patient is different, with the body responding in unique ways. There is a chance that your eyes may under or over heal, meaning that a further procedure will be required.
Your Optegra ophthalmic surgeon will monitor your progress and recovery carefully in the days and weeks after your treatment and can advise you if further treatment may be needed.
Glare or halo effect
The results of laser eye surgery are not immediate. It may take some weeks or months for your vision to reach its optimal level. In the period after surgery you may experience some blurring, and in a small percentage of cases there may be glare or a halo effect.
These side effects typically reduce with time in the first month after treatment and are gone completely after three months. If you have any concerns, call us to book a consultation with your surgeon.
After surgery, you may notice that your eyes are dry and a little uncomfortable. This is easily managed using eye drops to restore moisture level. Again, this is usually a short-term problem with eyes returning to normal in the weeks after treatment.
Vision is not as good as expected
It’s important to understand exactly how laser eye surgery works. While the treatment permanently alters your cornea and vision, your eyes are always subject to age and other conditions, so it’s not always possible to achieve perfect vision.
Almost all patients report a significant improvement in vision, but it is possible that your eyes will heal with some residual degree of short sightedness, long sightedness or astigmatism. For many people, glasses will still be required for some tasks, such as reading or driving. The main aim of laser eye surgery is to reduce the reliance on glasses and lenses, not eliminate them (although this can happen in some cases).
Your Optegra surgeon will discuss all this with you at the consultation stage. So you won’t be under any false illusions about ‘miracle cures’. It may be possible that a top up procedure in the future can further improve your eyesight.
Flap complications
In procedures where a flap is created, such as LASIK, a small percentage of procedures can have some complications. At Optegra, we use the latest technology, which reduces the risk of complications and allows for a better resolution when problems do occur. Our range of treatments includes SMILE eye surgery, which has no risk of flap complications.


How to reduce the risks of laser eye surgery

Although the risks of laser eye surgery are minimal, there are still a few things you can do to reduce the chances of complication.
By choosing a treatment centre and ophthalmic surgeon with exceptional standards and positive customer reviews like Optegra, you will automatically reduce the risk of complications. We’re the UK’s number one trusted eye care group according to customers, which tells you everything you need to know.
Further things you can do to minimise risk include not wearing eye make up for seven days prior to surgery, and discarding old make up to prevent bacteria getting into your eyes. You should also avoid washing your hair and face in the 24 hours before surgery to prevent cosmetics and soap getting into your eyes.
After surgery you should avoid strenuous exercise for 48 hours and all water-based activities for about a month. You should also wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from excessive light.
Perhaps most importantly, you need to follow all the advice your surgeon gives you before, during and after surgery. You can find out more about how to reduce the risks of laser eye surgery here.
If you want to find out more about the risks of laser eye surgery or simply talk through your concerns, then why not book a free consultation with one of our specialists? They can tell you everything you need to know and address any issues or worries you may have about treatment. Alternatively, you can drop into one of our open evenings if you’d like to know more.
At Optegra we’ll give you an in depth understanding of the risks and rewards of laser eye surgery so you have a clear picture of what to expect. And with our highly qualified team of specialist surgeons, you can be sure that you’re undergoing treatment in the safest way possible. 

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