In recent years, LASIK has been mistaken for LASEK, a slightly different procedure with the same objective. Depending on the shape and thickness of your corneas, you might be a more appropriate candidate for one than the other. A specialist can perform a thorough examination to determine which will provide the clearest, most lasting results.
At Ventura Eye Institute in Camarillo, California, Michael Ragen, MD and our professional team of specialists offer both LASEK and LASIK. Find out the differences and options that might be right for you.
The differences between LASIK and LASEK
LASIK and LASEK have three key differences, though the procedures are much alike and have similarly high success rates and side effects.
Which you choose depends on the thickness of your corneas, the quality of your eyesight, and your personal preferences about risk and recovery.
During LASIK surgery, a flap is cut into the cornea and lifted so your surgeon can correct the tissue underneath. Then, the flap is placed back over the eye and left to heal.
However, if you have thin corneas, there might not be enough to create the corneal flap. In these cases, LASEK may be the more appropriate option.
LASIK is a relatively quick procedure, and the recovery time is rather short. LASEK takes a bit longer, but this is because the process is much more gentle and delicate. Dr. Ragen has performed more of these procedures than any other surgeon in the country, making it the preferable option for many of his patients.
Instead of cutting the cornea, a mild medication is used to lift the epithelium or the uppermost layer. Once your vision has been corrected, it is placed back over the eye. It can take slightly longer for your eyes to feel normal again, but when done correctly, LASEK can produce better results and pose fewer risks than traditional LASIK.
Ventura Eye Institute offers bladeless or all-laser LASIK. A femtosecond laser is used to cut the cornea itself, while an excimer laser is used underneath. Dr. Ragen utilizes an extremely advanced laser for vision correction: the VISX Star S4 Laser with CustomVue™, which uses wavefront technology based on astrophysics to correct refractive errors.
Deciding which is right for you
Before scheduling surgery, it’s important that you consult a specialist and undergo a thorough eye examination. Dr. Ragen will evaluate your eyesight, cornea thickness, and overall health during your consultation.
You will also be asked to review both procedures' risks and recovery requirements to ensure that you’re fully informed about your options. From there, you can discuss whether you want to invest in LASIK or LASEK.
To learn more, schedule a visit to Ventura Eye Institute by calling 805-388-1211 or book a virtual appointment online.