The decision of whether to wear contact lenses or undergo LASIK is not straightforward. There are many important factors to consider, like the cost, safety and daily convenience of each option.
If you are faced with the decision of how to correct imperfect eyesight, respected eye surgeon Ernest Kornmehl can help. Here, he discusses some of the crucial considerations when comparing LASIK to contact lenses.
For a long time, LASIK was thought to be risky, probably because it was new and people were not familiar with it. However, with time and advances in technology and technique, LASIK has shown itself to have a very safe record. When the surgery is performed by a qualified refractive surgeon, complications are rare.
Contacts, on the other hand, present some safety risks. The average contact wearer puts him- or herself at risk of infection, bacterial irritation, altered corneal thickness, corneal ulcers and micro-cysts — problems that can cause serious, permanent vision damage — due to transferring bacteria from their fingers to their eyes. The risks are even higher when the contacts are not properly stored or removed.
Cost is another important factor. Although LASIK has a higher up-front cost, it is a one-time fee. Compare that to the repeated costs of buying contacts (and glasses) over the course of decades. If you were to add up all the costs associated with contacts and glasses, you would probably find that you end up saving money in the long run.
Some patients consider contact lenses a nuisance — particularly a very active person. Hobbies like snorkeling and scuba diving can’t be done easily with contact lenses. There is also the concern that contact and collision sports can result in a lost contact lens.
LASIK or PRK is perfectly suited to all lifestyles, especially active lifestyles. Because LASIK permanently corrects the eye, there is no risk of a contact or pair of glasses becoming lost or damaged while participating in sports or activities.
Most contact wearers will admit that the daily care for the lenses can be a hassle. Inserting and removing the lenses and storing them properly is considered a chore. One of the leading reasons why people pursue LASIK is the ease of going through the day without worrying about contacts.
Explore Your LASIK Options
For more information about your LASIK surgery options, please call or email Kornmehl Laser Eye Associates and request an appointment.