Vision Correction Options
Everyone’s eyes are unique. The key to finding the proper vision correction solution for you is to find a team of experienced professionals that will accurately assess your situation and needs. This team must be candid and transparent enough to present you with your best options for your vision correction, even if those options do not include what that provider can offer to you. At 20/20 Institute, we specialize in LASIK, our focus on LASIK helps us to provide the excellent visual outcomes that are reported here on our website. However, it is common to discover that LASIK is not the recommended vision correction solution for many patients. You have our promise that we will be very candid and transparent with our findings; and if something other than LASIK is better for you, then our doctors will be sure to educate you on those options, as well as refer you to the providers in the Denver area that are well respected in providing those solutions to patients. At 20/20 Institute, the doctors will use their expertise to help you find the right fit for you and your visual needs.
Eyeglasses and Contact Lenses
At 20/20 Institute, we do not directly provide services for eyeglasses or contact lenses; however, we strongly suggest that those non-surgical options be considered as the first line of vision correction. There have been many advancements in eyeglasses and contact lens technology over the years. A patient should be aware of those options before deciding that surgical vision correction is preferred by them.
PRK (Photo Refractive Keratectomy)
This is an alternative laser vision correction procedure similar to LASIK, commonly known as PRK.
PRK utilizes the same Excimer laser technology as LASIK. The difference in PRK is that instead of fashioning a flap, as done during the first step of LASIK, the ophthalmologist accesses the cornea by carefully removing the skin of the cornea (the corneal epithelium). Some doctors prefer PRK for patients with thinner corneas. PRK also eliminates the risk associated with corneal flap creation. PRK has similar visual outcome results and safety profiles as LASIK. Some occupations require a patient to have PRK instead of LASIK, so you should check to be sure you understand your occupational vision correction requirements before choosing any procedure. PRK, however, has a much slower visual recovery and can be quite a bit more uncomfortable than LASIK during the first week of recovery, which is why most patients and doctors choose LASIK over PRK. The FDA does not provide a specific PRK risks page however recommends this link for more information about laser vision correction and its risks and complications: Click Here
Implantable Collamar® Lens (ICL)
For patients who are seeking an alternative to glasses and contacts and who are not ideal candidates for LASIK or PRK, many times ICLs can be an acceptable alternative. An ICL is an implantable lens that goes inside the eye to correct a patient’s eyeglass prescription. Currently, ICLs are available for nearsighted eyes with or without astigmatism. Of course, a detailed examination is required to determine if ICLs are an acceptable option for each patient.
For patients 40 years and older who are discussing and planning for presbyopia (loss of the ability to focus on near objects with age). Monovision or Blended Vision is the technique of purposely setting the vision-correction goal of one of the patient’s eyes (usually the dominant eye) for 20/20 at a distance and the other eye (usually the non-dominant eye) for near or reading tasks. Many patients find this a very acceptable way to minimize the need for reading glasses. The Monovision or Blended vision strategy can be something that a doctor and the patient decide to execute for Contact Lenses, LASIK, PRK, ICL, or RLE (see below) Every patient should discuss the details of their particular situation with their doctor. Also, it is recommended that the doctor and patient set up a monovision trial where the patient can “test drive” the proposed technique prior to the procedures being performed.
Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE)
Usually reserved for patients that are in their 50s or above. For patients who are seeking an alternative to glasses and contacts and who are not ideal candidates for LASIK or PRK, RLE can be an acceptable alternative to Laser Vision Correction. RLE is a procedure that removes the natural lens of the eye and replaces it with an FDA-approved Intraocular Lens (IOL) which is approved for the treatment of Cataracts. IOLs can correct for Farsightedness and Nearsightedness. More advanced premium versions of these IOLs can correct for Astigmatism as well as for near vision and intermediate vision needs. Using these FDA-approved devices for RLE is considered “Off-Label.” The decision to proceed with RLE is between you and your doctor. Discuss the risks and benefits of RLE directly with your doctor.