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Refractive (eye) Surgery

Approximately 50 percent of the population suffers from poor sight without glasses, requiring the use of corrective lenses, either contact lenses or spectacles. Surgery offers an alternative to reduce or eliminate this dependence on corrective lenses. It can specifically treat patients who are long or short sighted or who have astigmatism.

Refractive surgery can be divided into two main types:

  • lens surgery
    • intra-ocular or implantable contact lenses
    • fixed focus, multi-focal or accommodative intra-ocular lenses
  • corneal laser surgery
    • surface treatment or Laser Epithelial Keratomileusis (LASEK)
    • flap treatment or Laser Assisted In-Situ Keratomileusis (LASIK).

There is the option for Wavefront guided treatment and the fairly new all-laser LASIK procedure, using intralase or a Femtosecond laser.

Lens surgery

Lens surgery is an early form of cataract surgery offered to those patients beyond the treatment limits of laser treatment. It replaces the natural lens of the eye with a silicone (implant) lens. Treatment is usually performed on one eye at a time, with about a week between procedures. This is performed with local (with or without sedation) or general anaesthetic.

Implantable contact lenses are a further option for those beyond the treatment options for laser treatment. In this procedure an intra-ocular contact lens is place inside the eye in front of the natural lens and is generally undertake one eye at a time under general anaesthetic.

Corneal laser surgery

Laser surgery is a day case procedure generally performed on both eyes with local anaesthesia drops. The treatment takes 15 to 20 minutes per eye and, in essence, remodels the cornea (the 'window of the eye') with a laser, which is computer-programmed with patient-specific data.

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