Is Laser Surgery Advisable for Any Age? Know the Age Constraints and Side Effects

laser surgery lasik

LASIK is one of the safest eye surgeries and a reliable procedure for everyone who is an adult. The minimum age criteria for undergoing a LASIK is 18 years. On average, people between the ages of 20 to 40 years are the ones who go for LASIK for vision correction.

LASIK is a surgical procedure that alters the shape of the cornea to address the refractive error, and in fact, lasik can fix astigmatism in an efficient way. The procedure uses an excimer laser to clarify the images focused on the retina. Read more info here about the detailed procedure.

 LASIK is a surgery that corrects refraction errors like:

1. Farsightedness

2. Nearsightedness

3. Astigmatism or an irregularly shaped cornea

So, what is the right age to go to a LASIK?

You would ask, how old do you have to be to get lasik? In most cases, human eyes stabilize by the age of 20 years, and they continue to be stable until one turns 40. The aging process for the eyes starts again at 40; for this reason, many of us complain of presbyopia over 40. Hence, the normal age expanse for a LASIK happens to be between ages 20 and 40.

Why not before 20?

Till the time a person does not reach the age of 20, there are chances that the refraction changes more frequently. Both nearsightedness and farsightedness grade progresses rapidly. Hence, LASIK before 20 might not yield significant results.

Why not after 40?

After age 40, aging eyes start to make its entrance, known with the medical name; presbyopia could occur any time after 35. This is a typical age-related vision disorder that makes nearby things unclear. People with presbyopia need to use reading glasses as they struggle to see fine closer details.

This happens because with age natural lenses of the eyes start to harden, leaving smaller eye muscles stiff and strained. Unfortunately, LASIK does not work on theflexibility and elasticity of the lens of the eye. Hence, it is not the ideal option for people with presbyopia as it cannot prevent the natural aging process of the lens. Therefore, LASIK after the age of 40 is doubtful.

Complaints like cloudiness of the eyes or opaqueness become fairly common after 60. This happens because of a cataract. The overall frequency of cataracts in the urban Australian population is 11.3%. Nevertheless, the number of people affected increases from about 4% of the population aged 50-59 years, to over 60-70% of those aged 90 years and above.

Then what is the ideal age?

As far as age criteria are concerned, there is no precise age that is too old for this procedure; however, ophthalmologists consider certain points with the older population. These recommendations could be:

  • The patient’s refraction (eyeglass or contact prescription) should be stable over the last year.
  • Eyes should be in good health.
  • The patient needs to be healthy overall.
  • The patient should not be suffering from conditions like cloudiness in your eyes, cataracts, glaucoma, or excessive dry eyes.

Though LASIK is one of the safest surgical procedures. It is not entirely free from side effects. Here are some side effects of LASIK.

  • A typical side effect of LASIK surgery is dry eyes. As we age, tear production decreases, and dry eyes can become worse.
  • Double vision is a common complaint after a LASIK.
  • Under corrections could happen when performed for people under 20.
  • Overcorrections can damage the tissue.
  • Astigmatism happens because of uneven tissue correction. Patients might still be stuck with glasses and contacts.
  • Flap problems- Incorrect flap removal can lead to many complications like blurry visions and watery eyes in some cases.
  • Regression causes thevision to go back to the original refraction slowly.