As an eye-care professional, you might hear this question from patients, particularly those of a certain age: “Is LASIK still an option for people with glaucoma?” The answer to this question is different for each person, and you should consider it on a case-by-case basis. However, here’s what you should know about corrective eye surgery and its relationship with glaucoma.
LASIK and Glaucoma
Generally, patients with glaucoma could still consider LASIK surgery for eye correction if their IOP (intraocular pressure) is under control. This is why the potential for LASIK surgery in glaucoma patients varies widely on a case-by-case basis. Additionally, LASIK recovery and post-surgery eye care can, in some cases, increase eye pressure, so this would be especially concerning for a glaucoma patient. Some eye professionals may recommend the PRK laser vision correction technique instead.
LASIK vs. PRK
Photorefractive Keratectomy (PRK) is another form of laser corrective eye surgery. Some ophthalmologists and other eye professionals may recommend PRK over LASIK surgery because of the different techniques involved. PRK uses a laser to change the way light rays focus on a patient’s cornea. The techniques involved with PRK cause less pressure than LASIK surgery. However, this is another situation where treatment will depend on the circumstances of the case. Patients may want to seek out an eye surgeon with experience operating on patients with glaucoma specifically for another opinion.
Who Is Not a Candidate for LASIK?
While having glaucoma doesn’t prevent a patient from getting LASIK surgery outright, there are some conditions that will. For example, anyone under the age of 18 is not a good candidate. LASIK surgery is not permanent, as a person’s vision changes drastically over time, but these changes are never more pronounced than in young adults. If you are pregnant or taking certain medications, you should also wait to undergo LASIK surgery, as hormones and certain prescriptions can affect the surgery as well.
We hope this information helps you explain to future patients why, in many cases, LASIK is still an option for people with glaucoma. To find more information and professional eye care products like tonometer tip covers, visit our website at Automated Ophthalmics, Inc.