Femto-LASIK - Introduction
Sight is considered to be one of the most important senses - and the eye the most aesthetic sensory organ. It is indeed possible to compensate for sight deficiencies by using glasses or contact lenses. However, many find these visual aids to be hindrances in one's daily routines or free-time activities. Optical aspects also displease many - glasses detract from one's appearance and the impression one's face makes.
Femto LASIK (laser in situ keratomileusis), in addition to LASIK, LASEK, and PRK, is a method of restoring normal seeing abilities. All of these methods belong to the domain of refractive surgery and are presented in more detail on this website. Femto LASIK in particular is recommended for patients with a thin corneal layer.
A preparatory examination performed by an eye specialist is obligatory. For preparation purposes, one should refrain from using contact lenses two weeks prior to the examination. During the examination itself, various tests will be carried out, e.g. a determination of one's refractive power is made either manually with the aid of measuring glasses or automatically using an electronic-optical process. The preparatory examination lasts around three to four hours. The eye drops that are introduced during this examination cause the pupils to widen, so it is strongly recommended that you avoid subsequent operation of motor vehicles. In any case, one should consult with an eye specialist and develop a personal-individual plan of treatment.
Although the actual treatment only requires a few minutes, one should plan about four hours for the operation. Pain-free treatment is guaranteed through the administration of local anaesthetic. Femto-Lasik does not rely on the microkeratome used in other methods, where a second laser detaches the upper layer of the eye's cornea, the epithelium, using ultrasonic light pulses. The process is described later in greater detail. With the help of a computer-driven excimer laser, the lower corneal layers are corrected. At the conclusion, the epithelium is placed back on the eye and functions as the body's own healing bandage.
After the operation, the eyes should be kept shut for about five hours for improved wound healing. Thus, it is strongly recommended that someone accompany you. The eyes are further treated with antibiotic eye drops for another week in order to reduce the risk of infection. Wound healing is indicated by light burning sensations in the first few days and is completely normal. Strong winds and bright, direct sunlight should be avoided for three to five days after the operation. One can indeed take up light sports again after five days, but one should wait a few weeks before participating in intensive sports or swimming.
The risks involved in the Femto LASIK method are very low. When combined with your eye specialist and regular check-up examinations, these risks can be further minimised. A more precise summary of the possible risks can be found at the end of the article.
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