Lasik and ASA


LASIK eye surgeryLASIK, or Laser Assisted In-Situ Keratomileusis is a surgical procedure for myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness) and astigmatism correction. LASIK eye surgery is performed using a laser to gently reshape the cornea under a protective flap of tissue. Lake Austin Eye uses only FDA approved technology for this procedure, including the Nidek and VISX laser systems.

LASIK vision correction utilizes two proven surgical procedures to correct vision errors; the creation of a corneal flap and the use of the computer-controlled excimer laser. The creation of the corneal flap was first introduced more than 30 years ago and has been successfully performed and perfected by surgeons worldwide. Using a femtosecond laser, a protective flap of corneal tissue is created which covers the area to be reshaped by the laser. This protective flap facilitates rapid vision recovery and reduces discomfort after LASIK eye surgery.

LASIK eye surgeryThe second technique uses a computer-controlled excimer laser with a cold, ultraviolet beam to gently sculpt the cornea, removing microscopic amounts of tissue to change the shape and allow the eye to focus more clearly. The shape or curvature of the cornea affects the eye’s focusing ability. In nearsighted patients, the laser will flatten the curvature of the cornea. In farsighted patients, the laser steepens the cornea. For patients with astigmatism, the laser will contour or make the cornea more spherical in shape.

ASA, or Advanced Surface Ablation, is when the surface cells of the cornea, or the epithelium, is removed prior to the laser treatment. This procedure is performed if Dr. Cottle decides that a flap creation is not the right choice for you. This may be because your cornea is thin, your surface is irregular, or for a variety of other reasons. After ASA, your vision will take longer to recover (1-2 weeks) but the end-result is the same.

Laser Vision Correction Technology

laser vision correctionThe Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves lasers and devices for a range of treatment. Not all lasers and not all treatments are approved by the FDA as safe and effective. At Lake Austin Eye, we use an FDA approved laser with a full range of treatment capabilities, including wavefront optimized and customized wavefront laser vision correction. The customized correction allows the laser to program a treatment pattern directly matched to the optical aberrations in each individual eye. The goal of wavefront optimized or customized laser treatment is to provide a better quality of vision, to improve clarity and contrast sensitivity, and to reduce some side effects of the LASIK procedure, namely glare, halo and reduced night vision.

Not all 20/20 vision is the same. While 20/20 measures the quantity of vision, or how many lines of the Snellen chart can be read, it does not define the QUALITY of vision. The quality of vision is defined by crispness, clarity and contrast sensitivity. A wavefront aberrometer captures the distorted waves as they exit and compares them to a perfectly flat light wave indicative of a perfect optical system. This distortion is represented in a 3D map illustrating both lower order (myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism) and higher order (coma and spherical) aberrations. The wavefront device maps the unique distortions of a patient’s optical system differently for each individual. These distortions are output as a 3D map, which becomes a guide for the laser, telling it where to reshape your cornea and correct your vision. Laser treatment with a wavefront optimized or customized laser pattern can result in a reduction of common side effects of LASIK eye surgery, including degradation of night vision, glare, and halo, and an overall improved quality of vision.

LASIK Eye Surgery Procedure FAQ’s

What can I expect in my preoperative exam with Dr. Cottle?

What can I expect during LASIK eye surgery?

What can I expect after the LASIK procedure?

What can I expect my results to be?