Health A-Z

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Once you decide to have LASIK eye surgery, your doctor will schedule an eye evaluation prior to surgery. If you wear contact lenses, you must switch to eyeglasses for a few weeks before this evaluation. This will allow your cornea to resume its natural shape.

At your presurgery eye evaluation, your eye doctor will review your medical history and eye history. To confirm that your vision is stable, he or she may ask to see your eye prescription records. Bring those with you to the examination.

Also, make a list of any medications you take. The list should include any over-the-counter drugs and herbal remedies. Your doctor will need to review this list.

After using eye drops to widen (dilate) your pupils, the doctor will examine your eyes thoroughly. This examination will include:

  • A test for glaucoma

  • An examination of your retina

  • A check of how well you can see

Your doctor will take precise measurements of your eyes. These will include measurements of the shape and thickness of your cornea.

After this eye examination is finished, your doctor will discuss LASIK as an option for you. This discussion should include:

  • Your expectations

  • Potential risks and complications of surgery

  • Other treatment options

  • Frank answers to your questions

At the end of this discussion, your doctor probably will ask to you sign an informed consent form. This gives the doctor permission to do the surgery.

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From Health A-Z, Harvard Health Publications. Copyright 2007 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved. Written permission is required to reproduce, in any manner, in whole or in part, the material contained herein. To make a reprint request, contact Harvard Health Publications. Used with permission of StayWell.

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