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Article: LASIK eye surgery needs to stop (ex FDA adviser)

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I had LASIK surgeries during November 1997 here in Cali, Colombia. According to this article, the first LASIK procedure was approved by the FDA in 1998.  For me, it was a miracle and awesome. I had extremely high Myopia and Astigmatism.  The Ophthalmologist who did my surgery was one of the pioneering scientists and she was a perfectionist. She was working on the FDA approval when I had my surgeries. At that time, she was #2 in the world for the LASIK procedure.   (The #1 doctor for LASIK at that time was in Bogota, Colombia)

I remember her telling my wife and me: "I am dealing with healthy patients. It is extremely important that they understand the risks"

That, IMO, applies to any kind of Cosmetic surgery and to any surgery that is elective.

From what we saw and heard from other patients, in her waiting area, I agree with the ex FDA Adviser quoted in this article, that the complication rates are between 10 - 30 %

After each of my LASIK surgeries, 2 or 3 days later, I went back for a checkup. She did approximately 10 patients each day that she operated. 2 or 3 of them had what I consider to be bad results. 

All surgeries have risks and Cosmetic Surgeries are included in that.

https://www.foxbusiness.com/money/lasik-eye-surgery-stop-report

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Night blindness would be really debilitating as we live in Scotland.  Husband is already unable to drive at night due to night blindness; if I had surgery and developed it (it's a fairly common occurrence) then I wouldn't be able to drive between 3.30pm and 9am in winter.

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I was one of those early people who paid a buttload of money for my laser eye surgery (it wasn't called lasik, not sure it is the same thing). 

I was offered, and purchased, an extra add-on that would supposedly prevent the night vision problem.

I have never had a night vision problem so far.

When they say many people get complications - what all are they including, and how many of the complications are really worse than having to wear contacts or glasses every waking minute?  I had one eye that took a little longer to heal - I think I moved or something during the zap zap.  I also had to use drops for dry eye for a while - at some point I decided to stop and see if it was fine, and it was.  (My mom has severe dry eye, so part of that may be hereditary.)  None of the side effects I experienced were sufficient to make the surgery a bad idea.

Of course if they're saying a lot of people end up blind, and this is because of the nature of the surgery vs. bad practitioners, then that's different.  But I doubt it, because in all these years I have never met anyone IRL or online who didn't think their laser surgery was the best thing they ever did.  I have never even heard of anyone going blind from it.  It has to be extremely rare.  If they banned all operations that have rare but serious results, they would pretty much have to shut down operating rooms all together.

But if there are bad practitioners out there, they need to address that.  Not punish the good ones and throw out the baby with the bathwater.

Maybe the guy who made this proposal doesn't know what it's like to have seriously bad vision and all of its side effects.

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I don't know if she had LASIK or PRK, but I have a friend who had very bad results and did almost go blind because of the surgery. She didn't advocate for people not to have it done, just that they should be aware of the risks.

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A friend's mother lost the sight in one eye after surgery.

Edited by Laura Corin
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I have two friends with lifelong complications. One was able to do two revision surgeries (her complication was double vision).

We were advised against doing LASIK by practitioners. PRK has a longer recovery but generally fewer complications long term because it doesn’t leave a flap in your cornea.

 

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"There's nothing wrong with a person's eyes who goes to get LASIK," Waxler told the television station. "They have healthy eyes. They could go and get a pair of glasses."

I disagree. There is something wrong with their eyes- they don't work correctly! Telling people to just go get a pair of glasses is so flippant and dismissive, and completely ignores the realities of living with glasses or contacts. My BIL, who flies in the Air Force, got Lasik. He wouldn't have been allowed to do so if he still wore contacts.

I got PRK ~5 years ago. I went from about 20/2000 vision (couldn't read the big E on the eye chart when sitting in the chair), to 20/20 vision. Life changing.

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Lasik was life changing for my husband.  He was incapacitated without his glasses and could not wear contacts.  He got it in 1999.  He actually did have a slightly complicated recovery but it's been fine since.  He did very carefully research his doctor/clinic prior.  

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My old manager had horrendous dry eye problems after his surgery, to the point where he told everyone to stop sending him long emails and also he kept vials of artificial tears with him at all times and put them in every 20-30 minutes whether he was in a meeting or not.  This was at an old hide bound company where that was very bizarre behavior so he must have been quite desparate to be driven to that.  

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What is PKR?  How is it different from lasik?  Can it help for someone who has very bad nearsightedness as well as farsightedness and retina problems that are causing bluriness?  I can no longer see street signs with glasses and I am having trouble with reading when there’s no sun.  I already have dry eyes and do not want that to get worse nor do I want to risk any blindness or double vision.

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I don’t know what PKR is....I had RK in 1996.  Is was life changing for me.  I had 20/20 vision for the next 20 years.  I now need readers ( at age 54j and also a weak RX to drive at night.  It was one if the best things I ever did for myself., 

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7 hours ago, SKL said:

I was one of those early people who paid a buttload of money for my laser eye surgery (it wasn't called lasik, not sure it is the same thing). 

I was offered, and purchased, an extra add-on that would supposedly prevent the night vision problem.

I have never had a night vision problem so far.

When they say many people get complications - what all are they including, and how many of the complications are really worse than having to wear contacts or glasses every waking minute?  I had one eye that took a little longer to heal - I think I moved or something during the zap zap.  I also had to use drops for dry eye for a while - at some point I decided to stop and see if it was fine, and it was.  (My mom has severe dry eye, so part of that may be hereditary.)  None of the side effects I experienced were sufficient to make the surgery a bad idea.

Of course if they're saying a lot of people end up blind, and this is because of the nature of the surgery vs. bad practitioners, then that's different.  But I doubt it, because in all these years I have never met anyone IRL or online who didn't think their laser surgery was the best thing they ever did.  I have never even heard of anyone going blind from it.  It has to be extremely rare.  If they banned all operations that have rare but serious results, they would pretty much have to shut down operating rooms all together.

But if there are bad practitioners out there, they need to address that.  Not punish the good ones and throw out the baby with the bathwater.

Maybe the guy who made this proposal doesn't know what it's like to have seriously bad vision and all of its side effects.

A very popular meteorologist around here committed suicide recently from depression brought on by lasik complications.

https://www.freep.com/story/money/business/2018/12/18/meteorologist-jessica-starr-suicide-lasik-questions/2335467002/

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Take notice to whether your eye dr has had the surgery or not. Mine has not.

 My neighbor is a regional manager for an eye care chain.  He said from what he has learned in his job, he will never have the surgery.

I don’t know anyone who has had complications that I’m aware of.  They all are pleased with the results.

 

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While my husband had it and in the end, after several attempts, was happy with the results, I would never choose any elective surgery. I don’t like any medical stuff, so am not going to do anything optional. My regular glasses never bother me, but it would be nice to not have to deal with prescription sunglasses. 

As for complications, the daughter of some of my in-laws close friends had such severe and unrelenting pain afterwards that she eventually committed suicide with the support of her husband and parents. Also, every one of my coworkers who had it eventually had to get glasses again.

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I had it in 2001.  I do have dryer eyes, but not a huge problem.  I also do see halos on lights now, which I didn't see before.  And I have a weird light issue on rear brake lights.  I can see the pattern of the lights behind the red cover.  I never used to see the actual lights behind the covers.  

I had it done by Dr. Maloney in Los Angeles, who was ranked the best at the time, I have no idea about now.  And he gave a huge discount to public school employees.  I think his mom had been a teacher or something.  He used to be on that show "Extreme Makeover."  

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I’ve never been comfortable with it, too many complications.  My mother had it done and had several (she was very healthy, that wasn’t the issue) and had to have it revised several years later.  But wearing glasses during my waking hours just isn’t that bad compared to potentially losing my night driving ability, double vision, or pain.

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My mother, siblings, and I were all scheduled to have it in 1998, with a very reputable doctor. He was one of the surgeons at the eye clinic where all the local glasses shops refer their problem cases. When I went in for the final measurements he told me I was disqualified because my particular combination of lens thickness and high correction put me at too high a risk for double vision and night blindness. He also told me that if I went to any of the “LASIK shops” that just did corrective surgery they would happily do it and I might get lucky but please don’t do that because eyesight is precious and it’s not worth the risk. So I didn’t.

My mom and siblings were delighted with their results. I’m . . . not delighted, but glad that we had an ethical doctor and I still have full use of my eyes with corrective lenses. 

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On 11/15/2019 at 3:40 PM, Sammish said:

"There's nothing wrong with a person's eyes who goes to get LASIK," Waxler told the television station. "They have healthy eyes. They could go and get a pair of glasses."

I disagree. There is something wrong with their eyes- they don't work correctly! Telling people to just go get a pair of glasses is so flippant and dismissive, and completely ignores the realities of living with glasses or contacts. My BIL, who flies in the Air Force, got Lasik. He wouldn't have been allowed to do so if he still wore contacts.

I got PRK ~5 years ago. I went from about 20/2000 vision (couldn't read the big E on the eye chart when sitting in the chair), to 20/20 vision. Life changing.

 

RIght.  I had 20/1200 and used to try to explain to people that by the time my eyes looked at something as far away as my elbow, it was already blurry.  I couldn’t even see my own elbow without blur.  I never, ever, ever did anything ever without glasses.

On 11/15/2019 at 4:46 PM, Carol in Cal. said:

My old manager had horrendous dry eye problems after his surgery, to the point where he told everyone to stop sending him long emails and also he kept vials of artificial tears with him at all times and put them in every 20-30 minutes whether he was in a meeting or not.  This was at an old hide bound company where that was very bizarre behavior so he must have been quite desparate to be driven to that.  

How long did he have it?  When I had my LASIK it was normal to be told to put in drops every 15 minutes.  My coworker/friend and I had our lasik on the same day and we sat next to each other at work.  We set a timer to go off every 15 minutes round the clock for a few weeks and every 15 minutes we’d put in those eye drops.  But after a few weeks, you don’t do that anymore.  We didn’t necessarily feel like we had dry eyes.  We just knew that those were the instructions (drops every 20 or so minutes around the clock, with special gel drops at night), so we followed them to the letter.  

29 minutes ago, Danae said:

My mother, siblings, and I were all scheduled to have it in 1998, with a very reputable doctor. He was one of the surgeons at the eye clinic where all the local glasses shops refer their problem cases. When I went in for the final measurements he told me I was disqualified because my particular combination of lens thickness and high correction put me at too high a risk for double vision and night blindness. He also told me that if I went to any of the “LASIK shops” that just did corrective surgery they would happily do it and I might get lucky but please don’t do that because eyesight is precious and it’s not worth the risk. So I didn’t.

My mom and siblings were delighted with their results. I’m . . . not delighted, but glad that we had an ethical doctor and I still have full use of my eyes with corrective lenses. 

I had mine in 1999.  The place I went to said they routinely turned away about 1/3 of the people who came to them looking to see if they could have LASIK.  Do they not do that at places anymore?  They explained that the surgery removes tissue with laser to change the shape of the cornea, and if there isn’t enough tissue to remove, then they won’t do it.  

 

——

I have haloing around lights all the time-daytime, nighttime.  It makes Christmas lights look all soft and dreamy, like in a picture with bokeh.  It’s annoying when I’m driving to have those halos around the oncoming headlights, but for someone who couldn’t even see her own elbow, the halo lights just isn’t a big deal.  At all.  I was practically blind and now I see.  I can’t get over how amazing it was for me to have this surgery. 

However, people used to randomly say to me, “You’re so smart,” because of the glasses.  It used to happen all the time.  But no one said it ever again after I got the surgery and stopped wearing glasses. I thought that was interesting from a sociology POV.

——

When my friend and I had the surgery, we said that we thought it was a great idea for people like us: blind as bats.  But if we could have gotten through life with a low prescription, or even if we were the sort of people who wore glasses only now and then, we’d have never gotten it.  It was scary to read about the side effects.

I was only 27 at the time.  Now that I’m 46, I’m waaaay more cynical and skittish about medical procedures, and I probably wouldn’t have done it now.

Edited by Garga
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I've met a couple people who have had their retina detach after LASIK.  For me though, my odds of detachment were about the same with or without surgery. This link sums what the specialists told me: https://shapirolaser.com/lasik-vs-lens-replacement-surgery-refractive-lens-exchange-or-clear-lens-extraction-new-study-again-favors-safety-profile-of-lasik/ 

   

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Several years ago, I was surprised to see (in an online ad for the Texas Tech University Eye Clinic) that they were still doing PRK, in addition to LASIK.  My impression is that PRK is more invasive? There is an Implant with PRK?  Before I had my LASIK surgeries (November 1997) in the eye hospital there were a number of examinations that had to be OK, for one to be considered a good candidate for LASIK surgery. I believe at the time the Ophthalmologist suggested an age range from about 25 years to 55 years?

My Stepson had LASIK surgeries several years ago, after getting a price (in one of those stores in the  Mall, after seeing a poster in their   window.  He went to an Ophthalmologist they have to do that, in another location. I believe his results were fine. I wished that he had  gone to the Eye hospital where I had my LASIK surgeries, but that was (understandably) more expensive.

Someone upthread mentioned the possibility of Retina problems?  Anyone who is being watched for Retina problems should go to a Retina specialist.  Never read in a moving vehicle (car, airplane, etc.)

Edited by Lanny
correct typo

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1 hour ago, Garga said:

RIght.  I had 20/1200 and used to try to explain to people that by the time my eyes looked at something as far away as my elbow, it was already blurry.  I couldn’t even see my own elbow without blur.  I never, ever, ever did anything ever without glasses.

.......

I have haloing around lights all the time-daytime, nighttime.  It makes Christmas lights look all soft and dreamy, like in a picture with bokeh.  It’s annoying when I’m driving to have those halos around the oncoming headlights, but for someone who couldn’t even see her own elbow, the halo lights just isn’t a big deal.  At all.  I was practically blind and now I see.  I can’t get over how amazing it was for me to have this surgery. 

I'm not being argumentative, just trying to understand. My husband has similar eyesight - he does nothing without glasses, wears prescription goggles to swim etc. With glasses he's fine. He doesn't see a reason to risk his current functional level of sight by undertaking a operation. Of course people make different choices, and that's fine. I suppose I'm trying to work out what's so terrible about glasses (I wear them full time too, but my eye sight isn't so bad).

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My mom has various severe problems with her eyes.  She has had at least 2 cornea transplants and has had dry eyes for decades.  She is essentially blind in one eye.  She never had laser surgery.

I have inherited whatever genes gave my mom those problems.  I have had laser surgery.  My eyes are great at the moment.  When and if I start having problems with them, I will blame genes, not the surgery.

That said ... I had my eyes done by the same people who did Tiger Woods' eyes.  I also know at least one person who was turned away as "not a candidate" for laser eye surgery.  So maybe I had a more responsible professional.

I would also add that as a person who could not see 12" away without lenses, my eyes were not so happy before the surgery.  I loathed glasses because they hurt my nose and ears, fogged up at inconvenient times, could not be worn in certain situations, etc.  So I wore contacts, but they were getting more and more uncomfortable, probably because of progressive dryness that I inherited.  Also my eyes could be infected and injured due to all the handling all the time.  Falling asleep when the contacts were in because there was no good time/place to take them out e.g. on a long flight.  Having bad vision is a health problem IMO.  What a huge difference to wake up to eyes that actually work without any BS.

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4 hours ago, Arctic Mama said:

I’ve never been comfortable with it, too many complications.  My mother had it done and had several (she was very healthy, that wasn’t the issue) and had to have it revised several years later.  But wearing glasses during my waking hours just isn’t that bad compared to potentially losing my night driving ability, double vision, or pain.

 

I agree. The thought of being able to see without glasses amazes me, but I won't have the surgery. I've worn glasses since first grade and don't see the problem withe wearing them all day every day.

I laugh at people saying their eye doctors told them their eyes are very healthy because at my last appointment the doctor said the same thing. It felt so weird because all I thought was, "Sure, except for I can't see." I understand that it's the shape of my eye that is off, which doesn't make it unhealthy, but still. 

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46 minutes ago, Lanny said:

Several years ago, I was surprised to see (in an online ad for the Texas Tech University Eye Clinic) that they were still doing PRK, in addition to LASIK.  My impression is that PRK is more invasive? There is an Implant with PRK?  Before I had my LASIK surgeries (November 1997) in the eye hospital there were a number of examinations that had to be OK, for one to be considered a good candidate for LASIK surgery. I believe at the time the Ophthalmologist suggested an age range from about 25 years to 55 years?

 

 

PRK is for people who aren't candidates for LASIK; maybe very myopic or lots of astigmatism on top of myopia, no implant just  the removal of the outer epithelial layer of cornea prior to laser reshaping.  Nowadays some of those people are getting a lens replacement instead.  It varies by age, cornea thickness/shape, and degree of correction needed.  

 

Edited by HeighHo

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I guess if wearing glasses doesn’t bother you it would not be worth the risk to have surgery.  But for me? I hated glasses so so much.  They hurt my face, my ears...,,messes with peripheral vision, swimming or boating was never as enjoyable because I couldn’t see....I think it is why I didn’t learn to water ski.....I could not see and it made it all too scary.

It has been close to 25 years since I had RK and I still only have to wear glasses to drive at night. If. Have to start wearing glasses all of the time in the next few years I would still think those 25 plus years of good vision was worth it.  

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I wore contacts for about 17 years and that was much preferred by me over glasses. One day, my eyes just wouldn’t accept contacts any more....I tried different kinds, different solutions....nothing worked.  That was when I had RK.

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My best vision was with bifocal contacts.  They solve the problem of losing one's glasses and not being able to safely exit a situation.  However one can't wear contacts forever or in all situations.

Glasses for me means no peripheral vision, uncorrected astigmatism that affects my driving, and a heavy weight on the nose - they don't call them 'coke bottles' for nothing.  Bifocals, depth perception can go wonky.

Edited by HeighHo

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1 hour ago, Laura Corin said:

I'm not being argumentative, just trying to understand. My husband has similar eyesight - he does nothing without glasses, wears prescription goggles to swim etc. With glasses he's fine. He doesn't see a reason to risk his current functional level of sight by undertaking a operation. Of course people make different choices, and that's fine. I suppose I'm trying to work out what's so terrible about glasses (I wear them full time too, but my eye sight isn't so bad).

Yes, I understand. 

I was 27 when I got the surgery.  At the time, they told me that if I wanted contacts, I’d have to get hard ones. (?)  I can’t remember exactly what that meant, but it meant that they wouldn’t be very comfortable and would be harder to get in and out.  And since I unable to get past the weirdness of touching my own eye to get them in and out, I knew I wouldn’t be a candidate for contacts, even if they were soft.

I was a late bloomer and just starting to feel like I might be able to be an attractive person, and the glasses were very unattractive—very thick lenses, even with featherweights.  I had to get sturdier frames to hold the prescription.  Those glasses made me feel bad about my looks.  I had learned a lot about dressing better and taking care of myself in my mid-twenties, and the glasses were the last thing that made me feel ugly.  Not as big a deal now, but a pretty big deal to me at 27. I’d been the ugly girl for soooo long.

I always had red dents on my nose where the glasses set on my face and they would hurt my ears a bit.  I worried about what would happen if an airbag hit them.  

If I went out in the rain or even a little mist, I couldn’t see because the glasses would get wet.  So, it was always umbrellas, even if it wasn’t a big rain.  

I get cold very easily and my nose feels like an ice cube In the winter.  With glasses, I couldn't wear a scarf over my nose (which I do a lot now) because it would fog up my glasses.  Even without the scarf, my glasses would fog up going into the cold.

I couldn’t swim.  I didn’t even bother to learn until after the surgery, because I couldn’t see anything, so what was the point?  How could I swim practically blind?  And I didn’t want to wear glasses in the water.

They were constantly getting fingerprints on them, so I felt like I was constantly looking through fingerprint fog and was cleaning them all the time. 

I couldn’t lie in bed on my side and read a book because the glasses would tilt; same for lying on the couch to watch a tv show.  

The first time I went out after the surgery and it was drizzling, I stood in the middle of a parking lot with my head pointed up at the sky, my arms outstretched, letting the drizzle fall all over my face and *seeing*.  I could see in the drizzle without my glasses getting spotted or fogging up.  I think I wept a little.  I felt so free.  

With glasses, they were always there, always in the way, always being annoying.  Sort of like a bra that has an itchy tag on it.  A constant irritant.

None of above things are horrible.  As I said before, now at age 46, I wouldn’t have the surgery.  But at 27, and not knowing people who’d had complications from medical procedures, I was more trusting and it seemed like the most logical decision at the time.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Laura Corin said:

I'm not being argumentative, just trying to understand. My husband has similar eyesight - he does nothing without glasses, wears prescription goggles to swim etc. With glasses he's fine. He doesn't see a reason to risk his current functional level of sight by undertaking a operation. Of course people make different choices, and that's fine. I suppose I'm trying to work out what's so terrible about glasses (I wear them full time too, but my eye sight isn't so bad).

That’s my husband too.  He cannot focus on anything without glasses more than about six inches from his nose - it blurs immediately.  He also has a very oblong eye and has a high risk of retinal detachment.

He will continue to use glasses forever.  Doesn’t even use contacts.  Somehow he has managed just fine for four decades 😉

 

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For everyone who says they couldn’t swim or do sports - sports and swim goggles with your prescription are fairly inexpensive.  It’s totally doable.  But I grant you, all but my three youngest kids wear glasses and I look cute in mine, so I’m not particularly biased against them.  That plus watching my mom’s issues made the choice for me.

My dad and stepmom had LASIK a few years after with no issue, but it’s just not a risk I’d take. I only have one pair of eyeballs!

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17 minutes ago, Arctic Mama said:

For everyone who says they couldn’t swim or do sports - sports and swim goggles with your prescription are fairly inexpensive.  It’s totally doable.  But I grant you, all but my three youngest kids wear glasses and I look cute in mine, so I’m not particularly biased against them.  That plus watching my mom’s issues made the choice for me.

My dad and stepmom had LASIK a few years after with no issue, but it’s just not a risk I’d take. I only have one pair of eyeballs!

 

That's for people with weaker prescriptions.  Once you get into -8 or more diopters...you are in free shipping range...or you can count strokes and lap swim.

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3 minutes ago, HeighHo said:

 

That's for people with weaker prescriptions.  Once you get into -8 or more diopters...you are in free shipping range...or you can count strokes and lap swim.

Okay that’s true the higher prescriptions are more expensive in the truly custom range.  But eh, my bifocals were about $550 last time and that was with insurance, so it’s all relative 😆

Hubby’s cheap solution is wearing his glasses with non-script goggles or safety glasses over them - that’s worked well for soccer and wood working and home remodel and such.  In higher impact sports I don’t think it would be safe to not get actual prescription goggles, but swimming hasn’t even given either of us issues. 
 

Either way, he isn’t a candidate for lasik at all and I’m afraid of it, so cute glasses it is!

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For me and my family the issue isn't actually in the pool as much as running around on the beach all day, etc. Goggles really aren't comfortable to do that all day, and they fog up etc. And obviously are not as clear vision as actual glasses.

In the rain you can't see.

In high heat/humidity they fog up every time you walk outside

No real peripheral vision at all, which drives me nuts the bit I wear glasses

They hurt my face after a while

can't lay on your side 

Etc. 

Now, the beach/pool deck all day and the humidity are probably a regional issue - more of a problem in Florida than elsewhere. But peripheral vision is an issue whenever you have a high prescription. 

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Another issue I had with glasses - my face is not symmetrical, and wearing glasses made it much more obvious, since they don't sell glasses that match both sides of your face.

None of this is so terrible that you can't live with it, but it is bad enough that it makes sense to look into other options.

Of course one is wise to shop carefully and only go with a procedure and practitioner with a good record.  If I was told by one professional that my eyes were not safe candidates for the zap zap, I would take that very seriously.

I've long wondered whether the much-cheaper lazik cuts corners at the expense of safety.  Maybe it does.  I would certainly look into that the next time my opinion was needed re laser eye surgery.  I have been thinking of doing this for my kids once they are done growing, if they are good candidates.  Seems a good idea to start adult life with good vision, teeth, etc. so there is less to worry about in those years.  So when the time comes, I will do some research.

All that said - I don't thin the option of laser eye surgery should be off the table.  Maybe it needs to be tweaked so the risk is lowered.

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7 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

For me and my family the issue isn't actually in the pool as much as running around on the beach all day, etc. Goggles really aren't comfortable to do that all day, and they fog up etc. And obviously are not as clear vision as actual glasses.

In the rain you can't see.

In high heat/humidity they fog up every time you walk outside

No real peripheral vision at all, which drives me nuts the bit I wear glasses

They hurt my face after a while

can't lay on your side 

Etc. 

Now, the beach/pool deck all day and the humidity are probably a regional issue - more of a problem in Florida than elsewhere. But peripheral vision is an issue whenever you have a high prescription. 

For me, the cold was the fogging issue.  Everytime you go from the cold outside to the warm inside, your glasses are completely fogged over.  Also if you work up some heat shoveling snow on a cold day etc.  Really annoying.  When I was a teen, I had paper routes and every Friday in winter, each family would invite me inside to wait for the money and my glasses would fog up ... then back outside they would fog up again ... repeat 50-100 times a week. 

I also used to get fog when I did certain kinds of cooking.

Not to mention the fact that every child between 4mos and 3years old seems to find it necessary to grab your glasses off your face, and I've had at least 1 pair broken that way.

Which leads to the other thing - when your glasses are broken and you haven't gotten around to replacing them yet.  For a while I wore glasses with one lens rather than go completely blind.  What if my glasses broke or got lost when I was traveling?  That would be seriously debilitating.  I guess some people would say "buy a second pair and keep it with you."  Sure, but that is another thing to fuss about.

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One more thing from personal experience - safety glasses.  I worked in a factory where contacts were forbidden, but the safety goggles could not be used with regular glasses.  I had to buy prescription safety glasses, which were not cheap and were quite heavy/uncomfortable.

When you add it all up, it's a lot bigger picture than "oh those people have perfectly healthy eyes, they don't need a fix."  We don't need it, no, but that could be said about a lot of slightly risky things that aren't banned.

Would this guy also ban contacts because there is no actual need given the option of glasses?  I wouldn't be surprised if contacts cause more complications than laser surgery.

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Yeah, the fogging and such just doesn’t bother us much.  It happens, but is so minor.  

We all keep our previous set of glasses or a cheap second pair from zenni.  I mean, it’s no more fuss than having extra toothpaste and soap bars in the linen closet???

Not a fans of contacts either, so you won’t find me defending them or anything else that involves touching my eyeball 😵

Edited by Arctic Mama

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14 minutes ago, Arctic Mama said:

Yeah, the fogging and such just doesn’t bother us much.  It happens, but is so minor.  

We all keep our previous set of glasses or a cheap second pair from zenni.  I mean, it’s no more fuss than having extra toothpaste and soap bars in the linen closet???

Not a fans of contacts either, so you won’t find me defending them or anything else that involves touching my eyeball 😵

Sure it's more fuss - prescriptions and styles change over time, and high prescription lenses are not cheap.  It's not like you can just pick them up at Walgreens like readers.

Thing is - just because some people are cool with glasses, I don't see why that should have any bearing on whether the rest of us should have a choice to get laser surgery.

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1 hour ago, Arctic Mama said:

Okay that’s true the higher prescriptions are more expensive in the truly custom range.  But eh, my bifocals were about $550 last time and that was with insurance, so it’s all relative 😆

Hubby’s cheap solution is wearing his glasses with non-script goggles or safety glasses over them - that’s worked well for soccer and wood working and home remodel and such.  In higher impact sports I don’t think it would be safe to not get actual prescription goggles, but swimming hasn’t even given either of us issues. 
 

Either way, he isn’t a candidate for lasik at all and I’m afraid of it, so cute glasses it is!

I’m with you and am too afraid to get it done and can live with the minor inconveniences (for me) of glasses. My husband, who had absolutely terrible vision ultimately chose to do it because of his extremely active lifestyle. He had to have very expensive separate prescription goggles or glasses for contact sports (with interchangeable colored lenses for outdoor sports), scuba diving, lab teaching and work, and home projects, plus contacts for surfing (he generally doesn’t tolerate them very well, so only used them for surfing due to sheer necessity), all in addition to regular prescription glasses and sunglasses that continually needed updating. The fogging and rain were also issues because he’s the type to not ever let weather get in the way of whatever he’s doing. Once he started to get slightly decreased near vision and bifocals were in his future, that was sort of the final straw.

As a health professional, he did extensive research and consulted several professionals before doing it. While I still can’t ever imagine choosing it for myself after weighing the risks, I did understand his reasons.

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I have known several people who have had it done, including the eye doctor I see regularly.  Only one of them mentioned issues after the fact, but they were told it was normal and would correct itself in a few weeks.  My eye doc again wears glasses. When I questioned him about it he said that as you age and your eyesight changes and sometimes Lasik needs to be repeated.  He loved not wearing glasses for several years, but may not repeat the surgery.  I would love Lasik, but might not be a candidate with my extreme astigmatism.  I also would refuse to do both eyes at the same time.  I've heard that most Lasik facilities and doctors require you to both eyes at the same time, so I will be wearing glasses and contacts.

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4 hours ago, Arctic Mama said:

For everyone who says they couldn’t swim or do sports - sports and swim goggles with your prescription are fairly inexpensive.  It’s totally doable.  But I grant you, all but my three youngest kids wear glasses and I look cute in mine, so I’m not particularly biased against them.  That plus watching my mom’s issues made the choice for me.

My dad and stepmom had LASIK a few years after with no issue, but it’s just not a risk I’d take. I only have one pair of eyeballs!

 

I always played sports with my glasses on, and they weren't even sports glasses. Well, I didn't wear them when hitting in softball because I didn't like how up close everything looked when hitting, but that's the only time I didn't. Prescription goggles are a new concept for me, and I might look into those.

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1 minute ago, kdsuomi said:

 

I always played sports with my glasses on, and they weren't even sports glasses. Well, I didn't wear them when hitting in softball because I didn't like how up close everything looked when hitting, but that's the only time I didn't. Prescription goggles are a new concept for me, and I might look into those.

My brain is trying to comprehend how you could see to hit the ball without your glasses. I'm assuming you don't have a very strong prescription? Or didn't, anyway.

I wouldn't have been able to see the pitcher, let alone the ball, lol!

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3 hours ago, SKL said:

One more thing from personal experience - safety glasses.  I worked in a factory where contacts were forbidden, but the safety goggles could not be used with regular glasses.  I had to buy prescription safety glasses, which were not cheap and were quite heavy/uncomfortable.

When you add it all up, it's a lot bigger picture than "oh those people have perfectly healthy eyes, they don't need a fix."  We don't need it, no, but that could be said about a lot of slightly risky things that aren't banned.

Would this guy also ban contacts because there is no actual need given the option of glasses?  I wouldn't be surprised if contacts cause more complications than laser surgery.

 

They make safety goggles to go over glasses, and your work should have provided them. Even when I worked in the frame shop at Hobby Lobby we were provided with those instead of regular safety goggles if we had glasses.

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3 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

My brain is trying to comprehend how you could see to hit the ball without your glasses. I'm assuming you don't have a very strong prescription? Or didn't, anyway.

I wouldn't have been able to see the pitcher, let alone the ball, lol!

 

I didn't focus on the pitcher much and just the ball. Timing pitches when they left the pitcher's hand and picking pitches wasn't something I ever did but was able to hit very very well without my glasses. My prescription isn't terrible, though, at -3.75 in adulthood but unsure of what it was in childhood. Trust me, people thought it was super strange that I did it, but it's what worked.

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1 hour ago, kdsuomi said:

 

I didn't focus on the pitcher much and just the ball. Timing pitches when they left the pitcher's hand and picking pitches wasn't something I ever did but was able to hit very very well without my glasses. My prescription isn't terrible, though, at -3.75 in adulthood but unsure of what it was in childhood. Trust me, people thought it was super strange that I did it, but it's what worked.

Yeah mine is about double that, and throw in some astigmatism and I definitely couldn't play ball without glasses. I can't do really anything without them. Well, or contacts, which is what I prefer. Those have their own issues though. 

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5 hours ago, Excelsior! Academy said:

I have known several people who have had it done, including the eye doctor I see regularly.  Only one of them mentioned issues after the fact, but they were told it was normal and would correct itself in a few weeks.  My eye doc again wears glasses. When I questioned him about it he said that as you age and your eyesight changes and sometimes Lasik needs to be repeated.  He loved not wearing glasses for several years, but may not repeat the surgery.  I would love Lasik, but might not be a candidate with my extreme astigmatism.  I also would refuse to do both eyes at the same time.  I've heard that most Lasik facilities and doctors require you to both eyes at the same time, so I will be wearing glasses and contacts.

 

Both of my parents got it done and they both only got one eye done at a time! It was recommended by their doctor to let one eye heal before doing the other eye.

I haven't done it but I'm strongly tempted. With Bifocals my glasses have become a lot less convenient and the allure is strong...

(my prescription is between -9 and -10. I can use swimming goggles that are -9 even though blurry and its SO much better than not being able to see at all. At the beach though I ended up putting back on my glasses and sunglasses because it was too much for several hours)

 

Edited by vonfirmath
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3 hours ago, Ktgrok said:

My brain is trying to comprehend how you could see to hit the ball without your glasses. I'm assuming you don't have a very strong prescription? Or didn't, anyway.

I wouldn't have been able to see the pitcher, let alone the ball, lol!

 

My dad grew up VERY poor and he remembers wondering why his friends enjoyed playing baseball. Baseball to him was having a ball fall out of the sky to smack you in the face. There was no way to see it coming to catch, etc.  HE didn't realize the teacher was writing things on the board related to the teaching but thought he had to listen and take notes to figure out what he needed to learn. He finally got checked out and got glasses and discovered a whole new world. Including that the teacher was actually writjng notes/working problems on the board!

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7 minutes ago, vonfirmath said:

 

My dad grew up VERY poor and he remembers wondering why his friends enjoyed playing baseball. Baseball to him was having a ball fall out of the sky to smack you in the face. There was no way to see it coming to catch, etc.  HE didn't realize the teacher was writing things on the board related to the teaching but thought he had to listen and take notes to figure out what he needed to learn. He finally got checked out and got glasses and discovered a whole new world. Including that the teacher was actually writjng notes/working problems on the board!

My brother’s first comment after glasses was “I didn’t realize you could actually see pine needles on the trees!” 😆

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Yeah, I remember that first day with glasses.  I was all astonishment.  "I can see each individual brick on that building!!"  I was 8yo and in 3rd grade.  Lucky learning came easily to me, since there was no way I could ever see the board before that.  I also blame my eyesight for my inability to remember people's faces - after all, I saw few actual faces in my formative years.  Can't help wondering if this was also related to my autism spectrum symptoms such as not reading social cues.  Hard to learn to read expressions if you can't see them.

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