Are you interested in correcting your vision with laser eye surgery? Concerned about metal instruments coming close to your eyes? Blade-free LASIK may be a suitable treatment for you.
LASIK surgery corrects nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. At Dr. Raul A. Peña’s practice In Harlingen, TX, and McAllen, TX, he creates the incision in the cornea using a femtosecond-assisted laser instead of a metal blade. This typically results in a reduced risk of complications. Here’s what typical recovery is like for blade-free LASIK patients.
When Will My Vision Improve?
If you are considering this refractive surgery, you may wonder when your vision will improve. Most patients can see vision improvements as early as the day after blade-free LASIK, but it can take up to six months to realize the full effects.
First Three Days
After Intralase LASIK, patients may experience discomfort, irritation, and sensitivity to light for the first few days. They may experience mild pain, burning, and itching. Additionally, the eyes may appear red or watery. When looking at light, patients may experience sensitivity, halos, or glares. Also, patients may have blurred or hazy vision. However, these side effects typically subside significantly with each day that passes.
Even though patients may feel tempted to rub irritated or itchy eyes, it’s essential to avoid touching the eyes during recovery. Minimal contact with the eyes helps the corneal flap stay secure. Patients are encouraged to wear an eye shield to protect against scratching and rubbing the eye during the first 48 hours.
After the first day or two, our doctor will remove the eye shield and check your vision. Many patients show significant improvement by this time.
During the first three days, we may instruct patients to take extra precautions, such as:
- Apply prescription eye drops to reduce the risk of infection or inflammation
- Do not wear contact lenses
- Avoid sports, intense workouts, and other strenuous activities
- Wear an eye patch
First Two Weeks
During the first two weeks following blade-free LASIK, avoid products and activities that may pollute and irritate the eye. Patients are encouraged to:
- Avoid lotions, creams, and cosmetics on the face.
- Avoid swimming in contaminated water (such as lakes, pools, or hot tubs). Showers are fine.
First Few Months
As the eyes adjust, vision may fluctuate. It can take three to six months to see the full effect of blade-free LASIK. Patients are strongly encouraged to attend follow-up visits at our Harlingen or McAllen offices so we can monitor your healing process and track your results.
Like all surgeries, blade-free LASIK eye surgery comes with risks. However, only a minority of patients experience complications. In a comparative study published by the Journal of Refractive Surgery, “less than 1% of eyes had direct or indirect complications due to femtosecond laser flap creation.”
All LASIK procedures come with the risks of minimal effectiveness, reduced effectiveness over time, and other ongoing vision symptoms.
Here are some risks associated with blade-free LASIK specifically:
- Opaque bubble layer (OBL)
- Transient light sensitivity syndrome (TLSS)
- Rainbow glare
Learn More About Blade-Free LASIK
Blade-free LASIK can correct refractive errors using powerful lasers. If you would like to know more about blade-free LASIK and other procedures that can perfect your vision, contact Peña Eye Institute. Call (956) 264-1200 or message us online today.