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Dr. Lloyd's blog has now been retired. We appreciate all the wisdom and support Dr. Lloyd has brought to the WebMD community throughout the years.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

LASIK – Some Wounds Never Heal

This is going right up front so there is no misunderstanding:

1. I do not think LASIK is bad surgery.
2. I do not think every patient is a good candidate for LASIK.
3. I do not think every patient fully understands what happens during LASIK.

Regarding that third point, many LASIK patients are surprised to learn (months, years following LASIK) that their LASIK flap never heals. That’s right! That slender layer of superficial cornea never forms a scar to bind it to the remaining cornea.

The LASIK flap is necessary in order to expose the deeper corneal layers to the laser energy that reverses the refractive power of the eye. But there’s a catch – that flap never heals after it is gently repositioned. Because there is no scarring the LASIK surgeon can retreat the eye if more laser is needed. Lots of accidental injuries can also lift that flap: shrubbery, children’s fingers, spray from water skiing, eye-pokes from sports competition, etc. LASIK flap trauma can cause the flap to completely come off the eye…bad news!

This information is not intended to frighten anyone away from LASIK – just be sure you know all of the potential risks of complications. After LASIK be sure to always wear quality protective eyewear whenever you are involved in any activity that might jeopardize those precious LASIK flaps. Whether operating a weed whacker or water skiing be sure to take the necessary precautions in order that you can continue to enjoy crisp eyesight.

Related Topics: Discount laser centers, LASIK for children

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Posted by: Bill Lloyd MD at 3:24 pm

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