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What Is Custom LASIK?

Custom LASIK 101

We might be stating the obvious here, but your eyes play such a huge role in your day-to-day life. If you’re struggling to see properly, it’s probably making things pretty difficult. At LasikPlus, we are committed to ensuring that everyone has access to the best solutions for improving their eyesight so they can live life to the absolute fullest.  

If you’re interested in learning more about custom LASIK, you’ve come to the right place! Today we’re talking about Custom LASIK; what it is, what it does and how it can potentially benefit you.

First, What is LASIK? 

If you’ve been doing any kind of research online about laser eye surgery, you might have come across the terms custom LASIK or conventional LASIK– and you’re probably wondering what the difference is. 

LASIK (short for Laser Assisted in Situ Keratomileusis) is a vision correcting procedure that changes the shape of the cornea. It’s the most popular eye surgery used to correct refractive errors, like myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness) and astigmatism. 

During a conventional LASIK procedure, the specialist makes a tiny (painless) flap in the cornea, then corrects the shape using a laser- so that the retina can focus light the way it’s designed to. The surgeon then lays the flap back down, and ~viola~ the procedure is finished. Since you’re given numbing drops prior to the procedure, you can expect to only feel a slight bit of pressure. 

LASIK is considered to be a highly effective and safe procedure, and it only takes about 10-15 minutes per eye! According to the FDA, approximately 700,000 patients opt for the LASIK procedure annually. Additionally, more than 8 out of 10 people who’ve chosen LASIK no longer need to use their glasses or contact lenses. 

Now that you have a better understanding of conventional LASIK surgery, let’s dive into what you should know about custom LASIK. 

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What is Custom LASIK? 

Thanks to current technology, serious advancements have been made to further improve the outcomes of LASIK for our patients. We’re talking about wavefront technology. 

Along with blade-free LASIK, another significant improvement in the world of eyeballs has been the creation of wavefront-optimized procedures. With custom LASIK, your eyes are measured from front to back with a special laser using this wavefront technology- which is why custom LASIK is also referred to as Wavefront LASIK. 

Using the wavefront laser, we’re able to create a 3-D image of your eye which helps add a higher degree of personalization to your LASIK procedure. This is very similar to taking a “fingerprint” of your cornea. The doctors then use these measurements to perform a highly individualized LASIK procedure. 

In contrast to traditional LASIK, custom LASIK is a blade-free procedure, which helps reduce your risk of corneal infections and other post-surgery complications. The laser uses no heat, so there is no corneal tissue damage during surgery.

Wavefront laser technology makes the LASIK procedure superior for two reasons: 

Higher Amount of Precision and Accuracy

During your comprehensive eye exam, you will most likely be told to look at a chart across the room, while the doctor places several varying lenses in front of you. Sometimes the chart will appear to be the same, sometimes the difference will be obvious. This is how your prescription is determined for glasses and contacts. 

The wavefront corneal map that’s used is so incredibly accurate that your doctor can identify even the most tiny imperfections, allowing for better targeting during your LASIK procedure. 

Custom LASIK is More Targeted 

During an eye exam (while they’re trying to determine your glasses prescription) what they’re really evaluating is how your eye focuses the light. Once this is established, a single lens is determined for your eye as a whole, in the form of glasses or contacts.  

With custom wavefront LASIK, measurements are collected from multiple different points on your eye, creating a map of the refractive errors across the entire surface of your cornea. This information is then used to program the LASIK laser for a more targeted vision correction.

Since the 3-D map basically functions as a “blueprint” for each eye, your LASIK surgeon can provide more specific vision correction that’s customized to the unique features of your cornea- which wasn’t possible before the invention of this wavefront technology.

What are the Different Types of Custom LASIK?

When it comes to custom LASIK, there are a few different types of procedures:

Topography-guided LASIK 

Topography-guided LASIK is a form of advanced treatment for near-sightedness (myopia) and astigmatism. With this type of custom LASIK, the laser takes detailed measurements of the cornea, then programs the laser to address the refractive errors- as well as any corneal irregularities.

Traditional LASIK addresses refractive errors by correcting the overall shape of the cornea, whereas topography-guided LASIK also addresses abnormalities affecting the surface of the cornea. This provides a more personalized correction than most other laser eye surgery options.

Wavefront-guided LASIK

Wavefront-guided LASIK is performed after your eye structure has been mapped with wavefront technology- which works by creating a 3-D image of your eye, revealing even the smallest problems affecting your eyesight. 

The information from this wavefront-map is then used to guide the laser, addressing your individual eye anatomy and vision correction needs. Because of this personalization, wavefront-guided LASIK provides a more personalized vision correction than standard laser eye surgery.

How Much Does Custom LASIK Cost?

One of the questions we hear often is, “How much does LASIK cost?”  

There are several factors that dictate how much LASIK surgery will ultimately cost you, like your specific prescription, corneal thickness, pupil size, and eye health. 

Your initial LASIK consultation is complimentary regardless of whether you are ultimately a candidate for the procedure or not. The specific expenses will depend on the individual correction needs, but you should be able to qualify for insurance discounts. LasikPlus also provides appreciation discounts for military and civil servants

For more information about LASIK pricing, click here

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Set Your Sights on Custom LASIK with LasikPlus

The appeal of custom wavefront LASIK is obvious: A chance to ditch the glasses, or the daily routine and expense of contact lenses, slippery cases, pricey bottles of cleaning and storage solutions. Over time, the LASIK procedure even makes sense economically and ethically

Finally hitting your breaking point with glasses and contacts? Do yourself a favor! Take our candidacy quiz here, or schedule a free consultation with one of our qualified LASIK doctors today to see if custom LASIK is right for you. 

Hopefully this article helped shed some light on the benefits of custom LASIK. But, if you still have questions, head over to these articles for more information: