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Can LASIK correct refractive errors?

LASIK (laser in situ keratomileusis) is an outpatient surgical procedure that uses an excimer laser to reshape the eye’s cornea — the clear window at the front of the eye — to correct refractive errors, or problems with the way the eye focuses light. Millions of people today have had refractive errors such as nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism corrected with LASIK.

With LASIK, your ophthalmologist (Eye M.D.) creates a thin flap in the corneal tissue. After folding back the flap, your ophthalmologist uses a laser, preprogrammed with measurements specific to your eye, to sculpt the exposed corneal tissue. Once the cornea has been reshaped, the flap is put back into position, where it adheres naturally on its own.

One of the keys to a successful LASIK procedure is the measurement your ophthalmologist takes to determine your refractive error. Now an enhanced version of LASIK called wavefront-guided custom laser surgery, or wavefront-guided LASIK, is available. Wavefront-guided LASIK uses a special device to precisely measure the eye’s unique irregularities and variations. If wavefront-guided LASIK is an option for you, you may benefit from this customized approach to refractive surgery, which results in improved quality of vision compared to the traditional approach.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.