LASIK stands for "Laser in situ keratomileusis".
The procedure is performed on an outpatient basis. The laser application itself takes only a few seconds.
Before the LASIK treatment, anaesthetic eye drops are administered for pain-free treatment. As soon as the effect occurs, a small lid, called a flap, is prepared on the corneal surface. This is done with an instrument known as a microkeratome, a kind of mechanical precision scalpel.
Once the cornea flap has been prepared, it is then opened in order to expose the corneal layer beneath. Now the actual laser treatment begins. The laser beam models and shapes the corneal tissue in the micrometer range in such an exact way that the cornea attains the correct curvature and the defective vision is corrected. Thereafter, the flap is put back into its original position like an endogenous contact lens. The LASIK treatment is over, and after a check you can go home.
The LASIK method has been used since 1990 and is nowadays the most frequently used procedure in eye laser treatments worldwide. It was officially classified as a scientifically recognized procedure by the DOG (German Ophthalmological Society) and the BVA (Professional Association of Ophthalmologists) in 1999.
LASEK stands for "Laser Epithelial Keratomileusis".
The LASEK treatment is a very short intervention, as is the case of the LASIK treatment. Beforehand, anaesthetic eye drops are administered for painfree treatment.
The treatment begins with the detaching and removal of the corneal surface cell layer (epithelium). Then the actual laser treatment begins. The laser beam models and shapes the corneal tissue in the micrometer range in such a way that the cornea attains the correct curvature and the defective vision is corrected. Subsequently, a soft contact lens is inserted, which covers the cornea for a few days, in order to protect the eye until the epithelium has regrown.
The laser treatment is over. You can go home after a check.
The PRK method has been a scientifically recognised procedure for the correction of defective vision since 1995.
It is particularly suitable for patients with thin or soft corneas and for persons who are exposed to the dangers of blunt eye trauma through professional or private activities, for instance, police officers or those engaging in martial arts.
Lens implant surgery
For patients with a very high degree of defective eyesight, eye laser treatment is not always the best option.
Other solutions present themselves here:
In young patients, an additional lens, a so-called phakic intraocular lens, can usually be placed in the eye.
The onset of presbyopia from the age of 45 can be remedied by a multifocal intraocular lens implant. Eye laser treatment may be necessary in addition.
Multifocal lens implant (MIOL)
Due to the aging process of the lens, nearly every person from around the age of 45 no longer sees things clearly close up (so-called presbyopia). In order to compensate for the aging of the eye lens, reading glasses or multifocal glasses are required. An alternative is the multifocal lens implant (multifocal intraocular lenses) in the eyes, the so-called "varifocals in the eye".
A multifocal lens implant replaces the endogenous (adolescent) lens, which enables very good functional uncorrected (glasses-free) visual acuity over the entire range of vision (distance and near) due to its special surface design. After surgery, patients can usually see objects in the distance and near well, and in most cases can dispense with a visual aid or reduce it to a minimum. A multifocal lens implant also provides a solution for patients who are short-sighted or far-sighted beyond so-called presbyopia, since this lens can correct both defective vision and presbyopia. Eye laser treatment may be necessary in addition.
With a multifocal lens implant, the natural lens of the eye is removed by means of a tiny incision at the edge of the cornea, and an artificial intraocular lens is implanted. Artificial lenses are compressed and shaped in such a way that they unfold in the capsular bag inside the eye itself and adopt the position of the original natural lenses. The operated eye is covered with a dressing, which can be removed again the next day. As a result of the relevant cutting technique, no suture is usually required. Overall, the procedure generally does not last longer than 20 minutes.
In some cases, refractive eye surgery (either implanting an additional artificial lens or completely replacing the endogenous lens with an intraocular lens) is combined with eye laser treatment. In this case one speaks of bioptics. This is especially suitable for patients from the age of 45, who want to dispense with reading glasses despite presbyopia, as well as in the case of defective vision combined with astigmatism.