Understanding the iLASIK Procedure
iLASIK surgery corrects or greatly improves three common refractive errors in vision: myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness) and astigmatism (irregular curvature of the cornea). In each of these conditions, light, entering the eye through the cornea and lens, fails to focus properly on the back of the eye, called the retina. The result is blurred vision. LASIK reshapes the cornea and restores good eyesight without the need for glasses or contact lenses. Christenbury Eye Center is the first vision care facility on the East Coast to offer a revolutionary all-laser, all-computer approach to LASIK surgery. This new blade-free procedure, known as iLASIK, offers results not yet comparable to any other LASIK procedure.
iLASIK Surgery Is A Two-Step Process
Step 1. The surgeon creates a tiny, hinged-flap — a minute window that allows access to the inner eye — in the surface of the cornea. Instead of using a surgical blade to create the flap, the Christenbury Eye Center utilizes a new state-of-the-art laser, the IntraLase™ FS. The IntraLase FS allows a cool laser light to pass completely through the corneal surface without potential harm to the outer tissue. The laser light then travels to the exact computer-programmed location within the eye. The cornea is gently reshaped according to the surgeon’s specifications for accurate vision correction. By eliminating the surgical blade, the IntraLase greatly improves the accuracy and precision of the creation of the flap, and enhances patient satisfaction. The risk of infections and complication related to the flap are greatly reduced.
Step 2. The surgeon lifts the corneal flap and the actual laser vision correction is performed with one of our 5 FDA-approved scanning excimer lasers.
What to Expect During Surgery
iLASIK is painless and fast – the creation of the flap takes about 10 minutes for both eyes. You will receive a mild sedative to help you relax, but you will remain alert and comfortable during the procedure.
Before the procedure, antibiotic drops and a topical anesthetic (“numbing drops”) will be applied to the eyes. You will then be escorted into the IntraLase room. A special instrument, called a lid speculum, will keep the operative eye open during the procedure. The fellow eye will be taped shut during the procedure. A sterile patient packet is used to interface the operative eye with the IntraLase FS. Because the IntraLase laser is not surgeon dependant and is completely computer-controlled, any one of our team of board-certified ophthalmologists may perform your IntraLase procedure.
Once your IntraLase procedure is complete, you will then be taken into the main laser suite, where Dr. Christenbury will lift the flap and perform the actual vision correction procedure using one of our 5 on-site scanning excimer lasers. The actual vision correction takes approximately 5 to 10 minutes, depending on the excimer laser used and the type and amount of correction required.
Before leaving our office, we will review all post op medications and a doctor will check your eyes to ensure good flap position and to answer any final questions you may have.
Precautions After Surgery
Once the iLASIK procedure is completed, patients are advised to go home and rest, keeping your eyes closed as much as possible for the remainder of the day. It is very important that you do not rub or squeeze your eyes for 1 month following your procedure. Antibiotic medication and lubricating eye drops will be prescribed. Protective eyewear should be worn for several days: eye shields when you are resting or sleeping and sunglasses when you’re awake. Activities that strain the eyes – reading, watching television and working at the computer – should be kept to a minimum. You will have a follow-up appointment the day after surgery.
While each person’s comfort level may differ, you may experience mild side effects that include tearing, sensitivity to bright lights and a feeling of “scratchiness”. Your vision may be somewhat hazy at first, but within a few days, these side effects should disappear. You can enjoy your normal activities with dramatically improved vision!
Are you a Candidate?
During your initial free iLASIK screening, we will thoroughly examine your eyes and perform comprehensive testing to make sure that iLASIK is the right procedure for you. A medical and eye history will be taken and several tests will be performed, including:
Once the pre-operative testing is complete, you will meet with aCharlotte LASIK Counselor to discuss your testing results and your candidacy for Laser Vision Correction. You will also discuss fees and scheduling at this time. If you choose to proceed with your procedure, you will be taken to an exam room and shown a video about the iLASIK procedure that highlights the benefits of the all-laser, blade free approach.
You will also meet with Dr. Christenbury to discuss any questions or concerns you may have – together, you will review the risks and benefits of the iLASIK procedure. Our exclusive LASIK Targeting Software will assist Dr. Christenbury in choosing the excimer laser that is best for you – most likely to give you 20/20 vision or better.
Confidence in the Results
At Christenbury Eye Center, we pride ourselves in making a difference in the lives of our patients. We are at the forefront of LASIK technology and have successfully performed more than 50,000 procedures. You can be confident in our ability to help you realize excellent results. Enjoy the freedom of an active lifestyle without the hassle of glasses or contact lenses. Call us today for a free iLASIK screening.