Most people qualify for LASIK, but it is not right for everyone because it is a surgical procedure. For those who do not, there are alternatives that deliver similar results. You may be able to undergo one of these if you find out that LASIK isn’t a good fit for you.
LASIK alternatives available at Arbor Centers for EyeCare include PRK, RLE, and ICL. Each has its benefits and can provide you with the visual freedom you’re looking for, even if you can’t get LASIK.
PRK is a similar procedure to LASIK, and they produce similar results. But there are a few key differences.
In LASIK, your surgeon creates a flap in your epithelium and then reshapes your cornea with a laser. In PRK, your surgeon also reshapes your cornea with a laser.
But in PRK, your surgeon removes your entire epithelium instead of creating a flap. The reshaping of your cornea is the same in both procedures.
Because they remove your epithelium in PRK, you have to grow a new one, making the recovery from PRK longer than LASIK.
LASIK recovery time is a matter of weeks. PRK recovery time is months to a year before your eyes completely heal. Recovery times also vary by patient.
Refractive lens exchange or RLE corrects your vision by removing your natural lens and replacing it with an artificial one. This is known as an intraocular lens or IOL.
RLE is an almost identical procedure to cataract surgery, except you don’t have cataracts to remove. It is a preemptive lens replacement procedure before cataracts cause vision loss.
During RLE, your surgeon will remove your natural lens and replace it with an intraocular lens. You and your eye doctor will select the best IOL for you before the procedure.
They will place the IOL in the space created by removing your natural lens. Recovery from RLE takes a few weeks, but your vision could be better than it ever has been within a day or two.
Implantable collamer lens treatment (ICL) is an implantable lens. It sits between your lens and cornea. What’s different about the ICL is that it doesn’t replace the natural lens.
Also, the ICL is removable. If you would like to get RLE or cataract surgery later in life, your surgeon can remove the ICL.
The ICL is made of a biocompatible material called collamer, which contains collagen. Collagen is a protein found in your body. Because it’s located in the body, the implantable lens is in harmony with your eyes, meaning your body won’t reject it.
LASIK or other eye correction procedures offer you an excellent opportunity to gain visual freedom. Schedule an appointment with Arbor Centers for EyeCare in Orland Park, IL, to discuss vision correction options!