1. How do I go about having refractive surgery?
The first step is to determine whether you are nearsighted, farsighted, astigmatic or a combination of the above. If so, you may schedule a free consultation. You will be shown an education video; a patient counsellor will discuss the risks and benefits of refractive surgery followed by a personal consultation with Dr. Lin or Dr. Holland. If it is determined that you are a good candidate and you wish to proceed with surgery, you may schedule one at that time. A full pre-op examination will then be arranged with your own eye doctor.
2. Tell me about PRK (Photorefractive Keratectomy)?
We perform PRK with an all-laser technique. First, the laser removes the outer layer of the cornea (epithelium), and then the laser reshapes the cornea for the desired correction. The whole procedure is done by the laser without the surgeon touching or cutting the cornea. After the surgery, a soft contact lens is placed on the eye to act as a bandage for several days until the epithelium regrows.
3. Tell me about LASIK (Laser assisted intrastromal keratomileusis)?
A thin flap of cornea is first created. The flap is then lifted and the underlying tissue is resculpted by the laser for the desired correction. The flap is repositioned without sutures.
4. Is refractive surgery covered by my medical plan?
It is not. Some extended health care plans may cover all or part of the cost. It may also be claimed as an expense on your income tax.
5. Do I have my post-op check-ups with my own eye doctor?
Yes! Dr. Lin and Dr. Holland work very closely with your eye doctor in your care and management. These important scheduled visits with your eye doctor are usually 5-7 days, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, and 1 year.
6. How much will my eye doctor charge for these visits?
This is strictly between you and your eye doctor. Please establish this follow up fee with your doctor prior to your surgery.
7. How long have the surgeons been doing this surgery and how many have they done?
Dr. Lin assisted in the first human laser eye surgery performed at the Louisiana State University in 1988. Dr. Lin also was the first to perform LASIK in BC in 1996. The first intralase was also performed by Dr. Lin in 2006. Together. Dr. Lin and Dr. Holland have performed over 95,000 procedures.
8. Can you guarantee 20/20 vision?
Not everyone has 20/20 vision to begin with. Surgery can only correct your vision to its best potential. All surgeries carry risks and cannot be guaranteed. We can provide you with a statistics sheet that outlines our success rate according to your pre-op refraction. Our clinic’s retreatment rate is less than 1%.
9. What are the risks?
The three main risks to refractive surgery are: infection/over and under correction. A complete Consent form is given to LASIK/PRK patients prior to their surgery date outlining potential risks.
10. What will my vision be like after the surgery?
Vision immediately after surgery is generally better than your pre-operative vision without glasses or contact lenses. However, clear vision is not achieved until the following day for LASIK and for PRK patients, it may take a week to improve.
11. Do I need to be out of my contact lenses before the surgery?
Yes. This is very important. You must be out of your soft contact lenses for one week, toric contact lenses for 2 weeks, and out of hard or gas permeable lenses for 4 weeks or more.
12. If I need a second treatment, will there be an additional charge?
There is no charge for an enhancement surgery within the first year as long as your post-operative care is maintained with your eye doctor after the surgery. After the first year a facility fee is charged. Our clinic’s enhancement rate is less than 1%.
13. Do I need reading glasses after the age of 40 (approx.)?
Yes. Presbyopia is an age-related change in the lens, unrelated to laser eye surgery. Whether you choose to have laser eye surgery or remain with contact lenses or glasses, the effect of presbyopia is the same. Monovision (when one eye is left slightly near-sighted), helps you read from that eye and may delay the need for reading glasses. Note: Presbyopia is not Hyperopia (or farsightedness).