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Vision Correction Methods

Vision CorrectionCorrecting refractive vision problems such as myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), astigmatism and presbyopia has advanced beyond simple eyeglasses and contacts. Today, there are several vision correction methods for patients to consider. In Victoria, Dr. Boozalis can help you to understand your options and help to select the best vision correction solution based on your individual needs. The following are common vision correction methods:

Eyeglasses: Wearing eyeglasses is an easy way to correct refractive errors. Improving your vision with eyeglasses offers the opportunity to select from different types of lens options, frame designs and even lens coatings for various lifestyles, occupations and activities.

Contact Lenses: Contact lenses are a popular alternative to eyeglasses. Soft contact lenses offer many convenient options including colored versions, bifocals and daily disposable lenses. Extended wear contact lenses can be worn for up to 30 consecutive days and nights without care.

LASIK: LASIK is the most popular form of refractive surgery, but there are now several other alternatives such as PRK, LASEK and Epi-LASIK. Victoria Eye Center uses the latest laser technology and expertise to customize your procedure to your unique vision needs.

Natural Lens Replacement: Also known as refractive lens exchange or clear lens extraction, this procedure involves the removal of the natural lens within your eye and replaces it with an artificial lens, also called an intraocular lens (IOL). This allows Dr. Boozalis to provide you with a new lens that has improved focusing power, decreasing the need for glasses or contact lenses.

Phakic Lens Implant: In this procedure, the implanted lens is situated on top of the natural lens. It works by adding focusing power to your natural lens without replacing it. This procedure may be beneficial to patients who are extremely nearsighted.

To learn more about the vision correction methods we’ve discussed as well as other options, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com.

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Types of Cataract Surgery

If the lens inside your eye has become cloudy, you may want to consider cataract surgery. During cataract surgery in Rancho Cucamonga, Dr. Boozalis removes the cloudy lens and replaces it with an artificial lens (called an intraocular lens: IOL) to restore clear vision. The procedure is typically performed on an outpatient basis and does not require an overnight stay in a hospital or other care facility. There are three types of cataract surgery, the most common form today is a process called phacoemulsification.

  1. Phacoemulsification: With the use of an operating microscope, your surgeon will make a very small incision in the surface of the eye in or near the cornea. A thin ultrasound probe, which is often confused for a laser, is inserted into the eye and uses ultrasonic vibrations to dissolve (phacoemulsify) the clouded lens. These tiny fragmented pieces are then suctioned out through the same ultrasound probe. Once the cataract is removed, an artificial lens is placed into the thin capsular bag that the cataract occupied. This lens is essential to help your eye focus after surgery. In this most modern method, cataract surgery can usually be performed in less than 30 minutes and usually requires only minimal sedation and numbing eye drops, no stitches to close the wound and no eye patch after surgery.
  2. Extracapsular Cataract Surgery: This procedure is used mainly for very advanced cataracts where the lens is too dense to dissolve into fragments (phacoemulsify). This technique requires a larger incision so that the cataract can be removed in one piece without being fragmented inside the eye. An artificial lens is placed in the same capsular bag as with the phacoemulsification technique. This surgical technique requires a various number of sutures to close the larger wound, and visual recovery is often slower. Extracapsular cataract extraction usually requires an injection of numbing medication around the eye and an eye patch after surgery.
  3. Intracapsular Cataract Surgery: This surgical technique requires an even larger wound than extracapsular surgery and the surgeon removes the entire lens and the surrounding capsule together. This technique requires the intraocular lens to be placed in a different location – in front of the iris. This method is rarely used today but can still be useful in cases of significant trauma.

For more information about cataract treatments including these cataract surgery procedures, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com.

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Vision Correction

Vision CorrectionIf you’ve thought about vision correction surgery, also called refractive eye surgery, you should know that there are many options available which are different types of laser surgery. There’s the popular and well-known LASIK (laser in situ keratomileusis), but also wavefront-guided LASIK and Epi-Lasik, PRK (photorefractive keratectomy) and LASEK (laser epithelial keratomileusis).

The scope of vision problems that can be corrected with refractive eye surgery has expanded greatly in the past few decades. Refractive problems that can be corrected include nearsightedness (myopia), astigmatism (unevenly curved cornea), and farsightedness (hyperopia).

LASIK works by changing the shape of the cornea – the clear portion of the front of the eye – so that light rays focus on the retina and improve vision. A thin flap is created in the cornea. The exposed corneal surface is then reshaped using an excimer laser and the flap is replaced.

Epi-LASIK is an alternative to traditional LASIK, in which an instrument called an epi-keratome is used to separate a very thin sheet of the very top (epithelial) layer of the cornea, which is then moved aside so that the cornea can be sculpted for vision correction.

Wavefront-guided LASIK uses the most advanced technology to address the finer imperfections in the eye. This type of LASIK involves measuring the eye from front to back with a special laser, using what’s called wavefront technology, to create a three-dimensional (3-D) image of the eye. The information contained in the wavefront map guides the laser in customizing the treatment to your individual visual system.

PRK was the first form of laser vision correction surgery. PRK differs from LASIK in that the surgeon does not create a flap. PRK is a good option for patients with thin corneas.

LASEK combines many of the benefits of other vision correction surgeries, notably LASIK and PRK. LASEK can be a good option for patients with thin or unusually shaped corneas.

If you’re a candidate for refractive eye surgery, the surgery should be tailored not only to your vision problems, but also to factors such as age, occupation and lifestyle. There’s no one-size-fits-all surgery. To find out more about vision correction in Victoria, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com to schedule your consultation with Dr. Boozalis.

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Should I Have LASIK?

Should I Have LASIKAny elective surgery is an important and often difficult decision. LASIK eye surgery is considered safe and effective by medical standards, but does that mean that it is right for you?

Convenience vs. Risk

LASIK and other refractive surgery procedures may offer the convenience of a reduced need for corrective lenses, but to achieve that convenience you will be required to accept some risk. You have absolutely no guarantee that you will get the exact result you want; however, a comprehensive examination from a competent eye care physician can help determine if you have an elevated risk for a poor outcome.

Not Just LASIK

It is important to meet your eye care professional with an open mind. LASIK is currently the most popular refractive surgical technique, but that does not mean that it is best for everyone’s situation. It may be that an alternative is more appropriate. Be open to LASIK alternatives.

Reasonable Expectations

It is important to have reasonable expectations of your vision following LASIK surgery. It is possible that your vision after the procedure will be better than your current corrected vision, but it is normally unreasonable to expect that result. The goal is usually to have your new vision without glasses the same as your old vision with glasses.

The probability of eliminating the need for glasses and contacts entirely and forever is small. Although LASIK can reduce your refractive error, possibly eliminating it, your eyes will continue to change after surgery at the same rate they changed before refractive surgery.

At some point, virtually all of us will need reading glasses for presbyopia. This may be reduced or delayed with monovision or other techniques, but presbyopia is a natural part of aging.

Eventually virtually everyone will develop cataracts and need to have them removed, again adding to the probability of needing glasses.

Is LASIK Risk Worth It?

Literally millions of people are happy with their vision after refractive surgery and delighted with the reduced need for corrective lenses. There are also thousands who are very unhappy. As a percentage, refractive surgery recipients dissatisfied with their results is a small minority, but should be considered.

Looking for the Best LASIK Surgeon?

If you are ready to choose a doctor to be evaluated for the LASIK procedure, we recommend you consider Dr. Boozalis, who has years of experience and expertise in Victoria. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Boozalis, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com.

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LASIK and Diabetes

LASIK and DiabetesMillions of people have chosen LASIK surgery to improve their eyesight. But is LASIK a safe choice for someone with diabetes?

Medical research has identified a clear link between diabetes and eye-related complications. Those who have diabetes are at a higher risk of facing eye complications in the future. Some effects of diabetes, like slow healing and increased risk of infections, make eye-related procedures, including LASIK, a potentially risky affair for patients with these health issues.

People with diabetes can opt for LASIK; they are simply advised to move ahead after a thorough and detailed analysis of the potential risks and consequent benefits. While studies have shown a clear link between diabetes and eye-related problems, research focusing on LASIK has yielded mixed results.

People with diabetes can opt for LASIK without an enhanced risk of postoperative complications provided their blood sugar levels are under control. Merely having the right readings on the day of the LASIK surgery will not be enough though; the patient will need to have stabilized blood sugar levels for a period of two to three months prior to surgery.

If an individual who has uncontrolled diabetes is interested in pursuing LASIK, then primary efforts should focus on bringing blood sugar levels under control first. Again, merely bringing the daily blood sugar count under control will not suffice. The risks involved in undergoing a procedure like LASIK will come down only when blood sugar levels are kept under control for a period of two to three months.

Apart from diabetes medications, patients can benefit by switching to a healthier lifestyle to ensure their diabetes remains under control at all times. Smaller and more frequent meals, intake of complex carbohydrates and following a regular and disciplined exercise regimen will ensure faster control over diabetes.

The eyes will need some time to heal after LASIK surgery. A surge in blood sugar levels after the procedure can increase the chances of complications. Therefore, a person with diabetes should ensure they follow a healthy lifestyle before and after their procedure.

While uncontrolled diabetes can lead to problems, keeping your blood sugar levels under control through sustained and disciplined efforts will increase chances of a safe and complication-free LASIK surgery. If you have diabetes and are interested in LASIK eye surgery, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com to schedule an appointment and discuss your options for vision enhancement. Dr. Boozalis has helped many patients with diabetes in Victoria to achieve healthy vision.

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LASIK

LASIKIf you wear glasses or contact lenses, you might consider surgery to correct your vision. LASIK is a popular vision correction procedure that uses a laser to reshape your cornea — the clear, round dome at the front of your eye — to improve the way your eye focuses light rays onto your retina.

LASIK is short for laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis. During LASIK in Victoria, Dr. Boozalis uses the latest laser technology and equipment, along with years of experience, to customize your LASIK procedure to your unique vision needs.

LASIK surgery begins with an anesthetic drop being used to numb the surface of the eye. Dr. Boozalis uses a special laser to create a thin flap of corneal tissue that is folded out of the way. The laser is then used to reshape the underlying corneal tissue, correcting the refractive errors of the patient. Once the corneal flap is replaced, it quickly adheres to the eye, and healing begins.

The surgery takes 10 to 15 minutes for each eye. Generally, both eyes are done during the same procedure. LASIK is an outpatient procedure, allowing patients to return home to rest following their surgery.

Before you sign up for LASIK surgery, here are a few things to consider:

  • LASIK is surgery to a very delicate part of your eye and cannot be reversed.
  • As with any surgery, there are risks and possible complications.
  • Millions of people choose LASIK and have great results, but it’s not for everyone.
  • LASIK may not give you perfect vision. Although most LASIK patients experience 20/20 vision following surgery, not everyone will have vision so sharp.
  • Even with LASIK to correct your distance vision, you are likely to need reading glasses in your mid-40s. LASIK surgery cannot correct or prevent presbyopia, the age-related loss of focusing power for seeing near objects.
  • Most insurance plans don’t cover the surgery.

If you’d like to find out if LASIK is a good option for you, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com to schedule a consultation with Dr. Boozalis.

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How Long Does LASIK Last?

How long does LASIK LastIn general, LASIK eye surgery is considered to be a permanent way to correct vision. Given that the procedure takes roughly 30 minutes total to complete, this is pretty impressive. Over the last several decades, LASIK results have proven to be very stable. After the initial healing period of 3 to 6 months, your distance visual acuity should remain the same for the rest of your life (provided, of course, that you don’t develop cataracts or some other age-related eye disease).

Rarely, a small percentage of patients will experience regression – a return of some nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism. If a regression of this sort occurs and becomes bothersome, a follow-up procedure called a LASIK enhancement usually can be performed to restore clear vision. In many cases, patients who experience minor refractive changes after LASIK aren’t bothered by the change and don’t feel a need for additional vision correction. Others choose to wear prescription eyeglasses only for specific activities (driving at night, for example), while some opt to have enhancement surgery performed.

For the best, long lasting LASIK results, Dr. Boozalis recommends that all prospective patients have a stable prescription for at least two years before considering the procedure. Usually before the mid-20s a person’s eyes may be still growing and changing. Having a stable prescription for at least two years is an important consideration for anyone, young or old, to be deemed a good LASIK candidate. For patients in their 40s-50s it’s important to understand that at some point in the future, they may experience presbyopia, a normal age-related loss of near focusing ability which causes up-close vision to become blurred. When this happens, most people need to wear reading glasses to read and to see near objects clearly.

For most patients, LASIK is a safe, permanent vision correction method. If you are interested in joining the thousands of satisfied LASIK patients in Victoria, contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com to schedule your consultation.

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LASIK in One Eye Only

Monovision LASIKIn the early days of LASIK surgery, the procedure was performed on one eye at a time. Today, most patients have treatment on both eyes during one safe and easy procedure. Although today it is common practice to treat both eyes together, some patients opt to only have LASIK in one eye for various reasons.

LASIK works to correct refractive errors such as nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. If you have normal vision in one eye and blurry vision in the other, LASIK treatment would only be performed on the one eye that needs correction.

If both your eyes require correction due to refractive errors, there is typically no reason to separate LASIK treatments. Also, when you add the inconvenience factor (double the number of consults, follow-up appointments, etc.), it’s easy to see why most people opt to treat both eyes simultaneously.

If you are curious about LASIK treatment in one or both eyes, the first step is to schedule a LASIK consultation to see if you are a good candidate. Contact Victoria Eye Center today at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com.

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LASIK vs Contacts

lasik vs contactsFor some people, making the decision to have LASIK is not as straightforward as it is for others. Misunderstandings about the safety and cost of laser eye surgery can sometimes cause patients to hesitate to move forward. It’s important to understand the record of LASIK vs contact lenses, over both the short and long term.

LASIK vs Contacts Safety

A lot of the misperception about LASIK safety comes from the very earliest days of laser eye surgery, when the technology and procedure itself was new. It was hard for people to accept that something so radical could be safe. Time has proven those initial concerns to be without cause. The LASIK safety record has always been high, with complication rates so low as to be considered extremely rare. Now with steady advancements in the technology, the safety record is better than ever.

Most people aren’t aware that long or short term contact lens use can cause serious and permanent vision damage. In severe cases, it can even cause blindness. The reason contact lenses are so damaging is the simple fact that every time you put one in, you are inserting a foreign piece of plastic into your eye. Infections, bacterial irritation, altered corneal thickness, corneal ulcers and micro-cysts are just some of the possible complications. Astoundingly, for those regularly using contact lenses, vision-threatening infections occur at a rate of 1 in 2,000, whereas only 1 in 10,000 LASIK recipients experience complications.

LASIK vs Contacts Cost

Consider how much you spend on contacts. How many years have you worn contacts? How much do you pay for a box of contacts? How many boxes of contacts are purchased per year? How much do you spend on contact lens solution per year?

LASIK is an investment in your vision, and is more cost effective than a lifetime of contact lens wear. The average contact lens wearer will spend tens of thousands of dollars in their lifetime on contacts. Victoria Eye Center offers competitive pricing and financing to help make LASIK an affordable option for all prospective patients in Victoria.

Other LASIK Benefits

If you are currently wearing contacts, you understand that there are additional non-monetary costs. Contacts can affect your lifestyle. Even simple things like waking up in the middle of the night and trying to move about can be difficult. LASIK provides you with freedom and clear vision.  Benefits include:

  • Increasing your quality of life.
  • Saving time during your daily routine
  • Not having to worry about a rip or tear in your contact lens
  • Not having to worry about losing a contact
  • Being able to see anytime, anywhere

Time and research has proven that when it comes to the health of your eyes and vision, LASIK is a clear winner over contact lenses — but the decision to have LASIK vs contact lenses is not one that should be made without first fully understanding the benefits and risks. Not everyone is a candidate for LASIK, and at Victoria Eye Center we screen our patients thoroughly so that only those who are truly suitable for LASIK receive it. Contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com to schedule a consultation today.

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Preparing for LASIK

Even though LASIK is a relatively safe procedure, it is normal to experience uneasiness or nervousness prior to surgery. If you are scheduled for LASIK eye surgery in Victoria, properly preparing for LASIK will help you feel more at ease and increase your chances of a positive outcome.

Here are some tips to help you prepare for LASIK:

  • On the day before surgery, stop using makeup, lotions, perfumes or creams. These substances may cause debris to get into your eyes.
  • Arrange for transportation. You’ll need to have someone drive you to and from your place of surgery. It may take several days to adjust to the change in your vision.
  • On the day of surgery, eat a light meal before leaving for your appointment. Most surgeons will allow you to take any prescription medications as normal.
  • Dress comfortably and casually. Don’t wear bulky clothes or accessories, especially in your hair. Wear something casual so you won’t need to change once you return home to rest.
  • It’s normal to feel some anxiety before having LASIK, but try to remain as calm as possible.
  • If you are concerned about pain, talk to your surgeon. LASIK shouldn’t hurt, but you may feel slight pressure from the laser.
  • Take a few days off. Some LASIK patients go back to work the day after their procedure, but Dr. Boozalis suggests taking at least a couple of days to rest. Make sure you keep your expectations realistic. This is especially important if you work outdoors because you need to keep your eyes as clean as possible.
  • Stop wearing your contact lenses. If you wear contact lenses, you’ll need to switch to glasses full time for at least a few weeks before your surgery. Contact lenses can distort the shape of your cornea, which could lead to inaccurate measurements and a poor surgical outcome. Your doctor will provide specific guidelines depending on your situation and how long you’ve been a contact lens wearer.

Contact Victoria Eye Center at 800-833-0234 or victoriaeyecenter.com for more information on preparing for LASIK.

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