Do Ophthalmologists Undergo LASIK?
Refractive surgeons know the pros and cons of LASIK better than anyone – but how many would recommend it to their family, or undergo it themselves?
Gregory D. Parkhurst |
At a Glance
- Laser refractive surgery has been around for over two decades and (like any other technology) it has become safer and more predictable over this period
- Refractive surgeons recommend this surgery to their patients all the time, and some surgeons (including myself) undergo it themselves, but would they recommend it to close family and friends?
- A recent survey found that over half of refractive surgeons had already had a procedure on their own eyes, and over 90 percent would recommend it to friends and family
- The fact that so many refractive surgeons use and recommend it goes to show how far it has come.
As ophthalmologists, we’ve been performing laser refractive surgery for a very long time. The first excimer laser gained FDA approval for photorefractive keratotomy in 1995, and since then these technologies and procedures have come a long way – by comparison, just think about what cars and mobile phones looked like in the early 1990s compared with what they’re like today. LASIK has essentially been around since the Berlin Wall fell, and the last days of Ronald Reagan’s presidency! Laser vision correction (LVC) has more than proven itself as having effectively passed the test of time, and has been proven extremely safe and accurate in countless peer reviewed publications, when performed on appropriate candidates. And patients agree – a meta-analysis of the literature shows that an average of 95.4 percent of patients are satisfied with the results of LASIK surgery (1).
But would you, as an ophthalmologist, undergo this procedure yourself? Would you recommend it for your partner, your children or your parents? As someone with a personal and professional interest in the subject, my co-authors and I decided to find out more about LVC amongst my peers…
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