LASIK is a kind of laser eye surgery that changes the shape of your cornea to cure refractive eye disorders such as blurry vision, nearsightedness and astigmatism with the aid of an excimer laser and a femtosecond laser to remove the corneal tissue. The term “laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis” is a common refractive surgery which helps people get rid of the option to use glasses or contact lenses.
It is a one-hour outpatient procedure performed at Personal Eye office. While the procedure is fast, the recuperation period is lengthy and might include a variety of symptoms, including dry eyes.
Note: Because the corneal flap does not heal completely for 4 weeks, there are some constraints on your activities during that time.
Dry eyes are typical after LASIK laser treatment, and your doctor will advise you on how to treat the condition after your treatment. A week after having LASIK, half of the participants feel dry eyes. This figure drops to 40% in one month and 20-40% in six months.
LASIK is a widespread technique, despite the danger of some people experiencing dry eyes after the procedure. According to the study, 95 percent of participants with LASIK were satisfied with how the procedure improved their vision.
We explain why you get dry eyes after LASIK, the risks of the treatment, how to cure dry eyes, and when you should see your doctor. Learn more factors to consider before choosing a Sydney eye clinic.
What causes LASIK-induced dry eyes?
If you had dry eyes before the surgery, the condition might worsen after LASIK. Other explanations for dry eyes after LASIK laser vision correction include the following:
- The operation modifies or slices the nerves in the cornea when your doctor constructs the flap to restore your vision, which may cause dry eyes. This makes your eyes less sensitive and may not produce enough moisturizing tears while you recuperate.
- Following the treatment, the surface of your eye becomes inflamed and unpleasant, causing your eyes to feel dry.
How long does post-LASIK dry eye last?
Many people experience dry eyes following LASIK, and the majority get relief within weeks or months. A few people may still experience dry eyes a year following the operation.
Your symptoms will fade as your eye heals and produces more tears for lubrication. The nerves in the eye renew the cornea at this time.
Who is at risk of developing dry eyes after LASIK laser eye surgery?
You may be more prone to dry eyes following LASIK if you:
- have dry eyes prior to the treatment
- are female
- are post-menopausal
- require moderate or severe vision correction
- require revisions during surgery relating to the depth of the eye or alterations to the flap
While having dry eyes prior to LASIK is a risk factor, it does not rule out LASIK surgery. Your doctor will assess your risk factors and balance the pros and cons of the surgery. Prior to undergoing LASIK, you may need to attempt different therapies for dry eyes. According to research, persons with dry eyes can get lasik surgery, although they may experience more severe symptoms afterward. In most situations, your dry eye symptoms will return to pre-LASIK levels within a year.
Other risk factors for LASIK include:
- specific eye problems
- autoimmune diseases
- changing eyesight
- ocular herpes
- abnormally shaped
Is it possible for dry eyes to create blurred vision after LASIK?
While you recover from the surgery, you may experience impaired vision and dry eyes. This can happen if your tears don’t flow evenly across your eye. This can make focusing light difficult, resulting in hazy vision. Blurred vision and dry eyes should be only momentary. To ensure correct therapy, discuss any symptoms with your doctor.
Other LASIK adverse effects that should fade over time include:
- blood-coloured streaks on the whites of the eyes
- halo effects surrounding lights at night
Dry eyes symptoms following LASIK
Dry eye symptoms after LASIK include:
- discomfort or soreness
- eye weariness
- red eye
As the eyes heal, these symptoms should subside in the weeks and months following your treatment.
Treating dry eyes after Lasik eye surgery
Home treatments and pharmaceutical drugs are available to treat dry eyes after LASIK laser eye treatment. Follow your doctor’s treatment recommendations.
Home remedies and over-the-counter medications
- Rest. Following your procedure, sleep or rest in a quiet environment to allow your body to heal.
- Wear eye protection. Your doctor will provide you with an eye shield to wear for a few days following the treatment.
- Avoid physical activity. Exercise and high-impact activities should be avoided in the weeks following LASIK to allow your body to recuperate.
- Warm compress. If you have dry eyes and meibomian gland dysfunction, apply a warm compress to your eyes.
- Limit your screen time. We blink considerably less when looking at computers, phones, or TV screens, which reduces the amount of tears (lubrication) and can irritate our eyes.
- Drops for the eyes. Eye drops with varying concentrations of hyaluronic acid may aid in keeping your eyes moist. Other eye drops are available to help your eyes stimulate moisture.
- Anti-inflammatories. To treat eye irritation, you may require an eye drop. Cyclosporine is a type of eye drop (Restasis).
If these treatments fail, your doctor may prescribe ointments to soothe dry eyes or dissolvable silicone plugs (called punctal plugs) to keep more tears on the surface of the eye for a short period of time.
When should you see a doctor?
Although dry eyes after LASIK are generally typical, you should see a doctor if your condition develops or you encounter acute pain. In some cases, these incidents might have serious consequences, such as eyesight loss. Consult a doctor if you are still experiencing dry eyes months or years after LASIK.
Is it possible to avoid dry eyes after the procedure?
Dry eyes after LASIK are frequent, and the best approach to deal with them is to follow your doctor’s recovery instructions. Rest, avoidance of certain activities, attending follow-up appointments, and using recommended medications will aid your recovery.
Dry eyes might arise following LASIK surgery. Most of the time, your dry eyes will improve as you recover from the surgery. Consult your doctor about how to manage dry eyes, and contact them immediately if your symptoms worsen or you encounter pain.