Eye Surgery Options

Eye surgery is a corrective surgical treatment for the eyes. Like in most surgical procedures it requires the use of anesthesia, usually a local anesthesia where the extra ocular muscles are sedated.

An eye surgery is done by an ophthalmologist or an eye surgeon. An ophthalmologist is a medical expert that can diagnose an eye disease and perform the necessary treatment or surgery.

There are many available eye surgery options being performed by ophthalmologists today. Among these options are:

Cataract Eye Surgery

Cataract eye surgery is the most commonly performed eye surgery. This eye surgery option is recommended when there is opacification of the lens of the eyes, usually caused by old age, trauma or sickness. Common symptoms of cataract are:

  • Unclear and cloudy images forming in the retina
  • Seeing glare from lights
  • Reduced vision sharpness

Read more about cataract surgery >

Corneal Eye Surgery

The corneal eye surgery is another common eye surgery. Refractive surgeries and corneal transplant fall under corneal eye surgery. This surgical procedure is recommended to correct the loss of vision due to a defective cornea; this will be replaced by a healthy cornea.

Read more about corneal eye surgery >

Glaucoma Eye Surgery

Glaucoma eye surgery is the eye surgery option when the optic nerve causes the intra ocular pressure to be high because of the presence of excessive aqueous fluid. This condition leads to blindness or loss of vision. The procedure done in cases like this include; the surgical removal of part of the eye’s drainage, trabeculectomy and draining of the excess aqueous fluid.

Refractive Lens Exchange

Refractive Lens Exchange or RLE is a non-laser, internal eye surgical procedure. RLE is similar to cataract surgery. But instead of replacing the eye's natural lens that has grown cloudy because of the cataract formation, the refractive lens exchange procedure involves the removal of the natural lens and an artificial lens is placed. This procedure is commonly done to reduce the high levels of long-sightedness.

Shortsightedness can also be corrected with an RLE procedure. But there are high risks of complications associated with this procedure, which is why it is only recommended for severe vision disorders.

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Photorefractive Keratectomy

Photorefractive Keratectomy or PRK is a laser procedure and it was the first laser treatment for vision correction that has been a total success. This procedure is performed by removing the tissue from the surface of the eye to alter the curvature of the cornea. PRK is also commonly known as surface ablation and this procedure has been performed since the 80s and most eye surgeons do not perform this surgery option anymore. This is because many ophthalmologists are doing Lasik, a laser procedure believed to be more effective than PRK. But PRK is also proven to be effective and the only disadvantage is that it just takes a much longer recovery time and only one eye can be done at one time.

PRK, however, has made a successful comeback ever since it was discovered that nerve regeneration in the surface of the eye happens faster with PRK than with Lasik.

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LASIK’s major advantage over PRK is the little or almost no discomfort right after the procedure, and vision clears within hours rather than within days. There are different forms of LASIK

Treatment methods like:

  • Epi-LASIK
  • Bladeless LASIK
  • Wavefront LASIK

Lasik eye surgery is usually chosen by patients because it is a lot painless during the procedure than any other eye surgery option. But there are also other alternative procedure to Lasik eye surgery and some do not require surgery. The advantage of Lasik is that it is highly effective and other procedures may not offer long lasting results.

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Intraocular Lens Implants

Lens implants necessitate surgery, and the first ever successfully intraocular lens implant surgery was performed on November 29, 1949, at the St Thomas’ Hospital in London and it was done by Sir Harold Ridley. As technology progresses throughout the years and intraocular lens implants are now being used mostly to correct monofocal lens for distance vision. This eye surgery option is also used for treatment of cataracts. This surgical procedure also requires the use of local anesthesia wherein the patient is awake and alert throughout the entire operation.

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Conductive Keratoplasty (CK)

Radio frequency energy is occasionally used in a spherical pattern throughout the periphery of the cornea. This is a comparatively new approach to refractive surgery and it uses mild heat from the radio waves aimed to reduce the size of the collagen. There were earlier problems with CK which include the possibilities of the cornea slipping back to their original state and the unsteadiness of the visions. These problems however are being addressed.

This eye surgery option is commonly recommended to patients 40 years old and over, but not recommended for patients with pacemakers or other electronic devices implanted in their body. It is also used to treat mild hyperopia or presbypia or both.

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Laser-Assisted Sub-Epithelial Keratomiluesis (LASEK)

Laser-Assisted Sub-Epithelial Keratomiluesis or LASEK is a surgical procedure somewhat similar to LASIK eye surgery. The difference is that not much tissue needs to be removed with LASEK and the recovery period is longer. People with corneal tissue of lesser density are the best candidates for LASEK treatment. It is also recommended by some eye surgeons to reduce the amount of tissue in the eye.

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