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[MERGED]LASIK / Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis ( Laser Eye Surgery )

Doctor Ira,

I have several questions and I hope you could take time to answer them. Thanks!

1. Are all people born with a 20-20 vision?
2. Is it possible for one eye to be near sighted and the other far-sighted? What do you call this? Is this curable?
3. Could one eye lens be concave and the other convex?


  • IraIra PEx Rookie ⭐
    Actually, most babies are slightly far sighted at birth. The farsightedness slowly decreases, with a slight acceleration in the teens, to approach normal (20/20) vision. The corneal curvature is much steeper at birth and flattens to nearly the adult curvature by about 1 year.

    Refractive errors (farsightedness, nearsightedness) are inherited. Refractive error, though inherited, need not be present at birth any more than tallness, which is also inherited, need be present at birth. Refractive disorders are "curable" in the sense that you can undergo procedures to be able to get a normal vision. Laser procedures like photorefractive keratotomy (PRK) and Laser in Situ Keratomileusis (LASIK), among others, provide you with long-term, better vision. However, when one reaches his 40s, the eyes begin to have difficulty in reading small print and discriminate fine, close objects due to loss of automatic focusing power of the lens ( a part of growing old, alas). The procedures you have undergone in no way protects you from this kind of problem in the future, nor does it prevent you from developing shortsightedness again. It just cures you of your present problem.

    I'm not certain whether you can be both nearsighted and farsighted, but since refractive errors are inherited, it seems a bit far-fetched for someone to get both disorders at the same time. It's like saying that one side of the body is tall, while the other side, short.

    [This message has been edited by Ira (edited 03-30-2000).]
  • stephsteph PExer
    i've been wearing contacts/glasses since i was 11 or so. (im turning 20 now..) is it advisable to have laser surgery??

    my right eye's grade is 900 or so, with astigmatism of 450 (ata), while my left eye's grade is 450, with astigmatism of 400 (ata din!)..every year that i have my eye exam, the grade goes up, so i won't be surprised if my right eye would go up to a thousand grade this year!!

    if laser surgery is advisable, which doctors perform it well?? and where??

    thanks :)
  • IraIra PEx Rookie ⭐
    I myself underwent laser surgery in 1996 in American Eye Center in The Medical City. I have nothing but good words for it. My vision was previously around 650 for both eyes with an astigmatism of around 175. After 4 years, it's already 20/20 -3. Terrific procedure, really.

    However, a requirement of both PRK and LASIK (2 different laser procedures for vision correction) is that you have to have had a stable grade for around 3 years. It's useless having laser surgery if your grade is still going to go up next year. You could go to the laser correction centers, they do free check-up to see whether you can be a candidate for the procedure, if you so wish. I and my best friend had our lasers done in American Eye, and we're both fine, and they have been doing it for a long time already, so I recommend that center. You don't need to look for an ophthalmologist to have it done; the center assigns you an ophthalmology consultant who has trained for this procedure, and you're assured that they know what they're doing, and that they do it well.
  • stephsteph PExer
    thanks :)

    so does it mean i'm not qualified to have the operation because i don't have a stable grade??

    if ever, will it hurt?? sting?? a friend of mine underwent the surgery and he said it stung!! :eek: but only for a few days (but still...) and it didn't erase his grade completely so he still wears glasses... :(

    the medical city is in pasig, right?? i'm a regular at unique, (in ongpin..)

    thanks again :)
  • IraIra PEx Rookie ⭐
    If your grade isn't stable yet, then you cannot undergo laser surgery. You'll just be throwing money away.

    The procedure stung a bit, but in my case, the pain lasted for at most 6 hours, and was tolerable.

    The Medical City is in Lourdes Road cor. San Miguel Ave. in Pasig, behind SM Megamall Building B.
  • stephsteph PExer
    ok thanks doc :)
  • IraIra PEx Rookie ⭐
    Photorefractive keratotomy (PRK) costs around PhP35,000 ceiling price, while Laser in-situ keratomileusis (LASIK) costs around PhP60,000 ceiling price.
  • How much does laser surgery cost?
  • rorsrors PExer
    my mom's 54 yrs old already. can she still have a laser surgery? ira, who was your doctor in american eye center (if u can tell :) )? my mom fears it might be painful. is there any pain?
  • IraIra PEx Rookie ⭐
    Depending on what your mom's problem is, she can have laser surgery. There is no pain during the procedure, because they give you a local anesthetic eyedrop. Pain post-operatively in my case was mild and bearable, and it would disappear on application of analgesic eyedrops.

    As for who my ophthalmologist is--well, mine was a special case because my doctor was the father of my best friend, and is one of the living legends of ophthalmology--Dr. Romeo Fajardo. He only did the procedure because he knew me well personally--otherwise, he doesn't accept regular walk-in patients anymore. But trust me on this: I know most of the ophthalmologists practicing in American Eye Center, and they are all very well-trained and perfectly capable in performing the procedure.
  • rorsrors PExer
    thanks, doc ira! i'll tell my mom. :)
  • IraIra PEx Rookie ⭐
    You're welcome.
  • rorsrors PExer
    hey doc ira! seems like my mom's dead serious in having a laser surgery if she can. she's asking where exactly is american eye center in medical city. do you also happen to know a certain dr. arambulo who's supposed to be an opthalmologist? is he any good daw? around how much would the consultation fee cost in AEC?

    [This message has been edited by rors (edited 05-12-2000).]
  • IraIra PEx Rookie ⭐
    I have not met Dr. Arambulo personally, but if he is connected to the American Eye Center, and knowing that how rigid the screening tests in AEC are before they allow doctors to bring in their private patients, then he is okay. If you are a walk-in patient for screening, there is no consultation fee, I believe. If your mother does not have an opththalmologist tied with AEC yet, tell her to just walk-in. They will assign her a capable doctor. Otherwise, if you first go to an ophthalmologist's private clinic, you will most probably have to shell out consultation fees, rates depending on who the doctor is. Like I said already, the ophthalmologists who are allowed to practice in the American Eye Center are all perfectly capable. There is no exception. AEC is in the 4th floor of The Medical City Hospital, just beside its elevator.
  • rorsrors PExer
    ok, doc. thanks so much again. :)
  • Reviving this thread....

    I recently came across an article in the Asian wall Street Journal about the slowing growth in laser eye-surgery market in the US after 5 years of giddy expansion. This is attributed to mounting concerns about side effects as well as the slowing US economy.

    I don't know about the post surgery record of corrective laser eye surgeries in the Philippines but in the US, as per said report, amid growing reports of botched procedures, the US FDA posted an online warning on Dec. 1 that, among others, highlighted the list of rare but serious risks of the surgery, including blurred vision, nighttime sight reduction and "even irreversible blindness". Of course this is just a warning but apparently there is also an increasing number of reported cases of reduced night vision as a common side effect.

    Your views, Doc Ira? :)

  • IraIra PEx Rookie ⭐
    These side effects are seen when you go to ophthalmologists who are not sufficiently trained for these kinds of procedures. A lot of them are joining the bandwagon because it's the trend nowadays, never mind that they never underwent the proper training for this. If done by physicians who know what they're doing, these side effects are almost never encountered. Of course, the law of average dictates that there will be problems encountered even in the properly trained. But you will significantly decrease these chances by checking your physician's credentials before subjecting yourself to this procedure. These problems are rarely encountered in the local setting because as of now, hospitals offering laser procedures still have very strict guidelines on who is allowed to perform them. It may not be true in other countries.
  • is that Php60k LASIK procedure for both eyes? i know these clinics charge per eye and not for both of them.
  • IraIra PEx Rookie ⭐
    The 60K is the ceiling price for LASIK for both eyes, preop and postop follow-ups included.
  • Could the possible side effects I mentioned in connection with corrective laser surgery be expected in laser surgery related to cataract removal?

    Before the laser method, what is/was the procedure for cataract removal?
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