Thursday, January 8, 2009

Lasik Surgery--Yes or No?

I have an appointment today to see if I'm a good candidate for Lasik surgery, that is, corrective eye surgery so I can finally be free of these damn glasses, which I've been wearing for 35 years. Well, not this pair the whole time, but you know what I mean.

Please note the photographic history of my glasses and that I've left out that vain year in high school where I refused to wear them, preferring to squint instead.

From everything I've read and heard, qualified professionals using state-of-the-art technology aside, the greatest factors influencing success involve the patient's expectations going into the procedure. If one is expecting to have perfect vision immediately without any "touch ups" and to never wear glasses for any reason ever again, then one might be dissappointed with the results. However, if one is happy to have their vision improved to extent that they no longer need corrective lenses 16 hours a day, though may require reading or driving glasses now or in the future, then one might be thoroughly delighted.

People report joy in being able to read the clock first thing in the morning, having clear, unobstructed peripheral vision for the first time or being able to swim or scuba dive with greater ease and safety. All these things sound good to me, too. I'm also looking forward to walking in the rain without needing windshield wipers, coming in from the cold without waiting for the requisite defrogging pause, being able to actually see myself when I put on makeup, being able to see anything when performing on stage and last, but certainly not least for I am still vain, showing off my eyes, the one feature I don't hate about my body.

I have personally known three people who've had this procedure done. Two say they think it's the best investment they ever made and they only wish they'd done it sooner. One regrets it completely, complaining daily about dry eyes and having to wear reading glasses.

I'm 99% sure I'll move forward with the surgery, if I'm a good candidate, but I'm interested to hear your thoughts on the matter. I've overcome any fear I may have had about the safety of the procedure and the sheer gross-out factor, mainly because I've seen it done and it only lasts a few minutes et voila, clear vision. Magic! Cost was prohibitive before, but I'm now I'm in a position to consider it.

So, what do you think? Lasik surgery--yes or no?