Does My Glasses Prescription Qualify for LASIK?
Millions of Americans experience vision impairment, interfering with tasks such as reading, working, and driving. Prescription lenses correct refractive errors, but only temporarily, and many people tire of the care and upkeep that glasses and contact lenses require.
LASIK surgery reshapes the cornea to eliminate imperfections responsible for common refractive errors. LASIK permanently enhances vision and reduces or eliminates the need for prescription lenses. With all the benefits LASIK provides, people frequently wonder, “does my glasses prescription qualify for LASIK?” Optometrists at GW Eye Associates, which serves La Jolla, CA, Carmel Valley, CA, and San Diego, CA, discuss LASIK candidacy qualifications to determine if treatment is suitable.
What Refractive Errors Can LASIK Fix?
LASIK surgery treats refractive errors due to imperfections in the shape of the cornea. Advanced LASIK technology allows our optometrists to treat nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism. In contrast, LASIK is not usually a suitable treatment for presbyopia, which is the result of changes in the eye’s lens.
Nearsightedness is a condition that causes the eyes to be unable to focus on distant objects. The opposite is true of farsightedness. Individuals with farsightedness can see distant objects clearly, but not those up close. Astigmatism is the result of an imperfection in the curvature of the eye; it causes general visual blurriness. LASIK eliminates corneal abnormalities responsible for these types of vision impairment to restore clear eyesight at all distances.
LASIK Prescription Requirements
When determining LASIK candidacy, our optometrists must consider the strength of a person’s vision in addition to the type of refractive error being treated. The strength of a person’s vision is measured in diopters. Each case is unique, but LASIK can generally treat:
- Nearsightedness up to -12.00 diopters
- Farsightedness up to 6 diopters
- Astigmatism up to +6.0 diopters
Again, these are just general guidelines. A LASIK evaluation is necessary to determine if a patient qualifies for surgery.
Additional LASIK Qualifications
A refractive error that falls within the treatable prescription range is vital to qualify for LASIK surgery. In addition, LASIK candidates must meet the following guidelines:
- At least 18 years of age
- A vision prescription that has remained steady for at least 12 months
- Sufficient corneal thickness (to accommodate the creation of a LASIK flap during surgery)
- Good general health
- Good eye health
Determining LASIK Candidacy
A comprehensive eye exam and LASIK evaluation is the only accurate way to determine LASIK candidacy. During a LASIK evaluation, our optometrists perform a series of diagnostic tests to examine all parts of the eye. We also thoroughly discuss the patient’s general health, medical history, and lifestyle choices. We consider all of the information to rule out any conditions that could increase the risk of surgical complications or compromise treatment success.
Contact GW Eye Associates
If you are ready to say goodbye to prescription glasses or contact lenses, you may be an ideal candidate for LASIK surgery. Optometrists at GW Eye Associates can determine if your glasses prescription qualifies you for laser vision correction. To schedule a LASIK consultation at our eye care center, send us a message online or call (858) 454-4699.