What is refractive surgery?

At Brusco Vision, we specialize in advanced refractive procedures, utilizing the latest technology to ensure optimal results for our patients. Our experienced team is committed to providing personalized care, tailoring each treatment to the individual’s unique vision needs. To discover how refractive surgery can enhance your vision and quality of life, we invite you to schedule a consultation with Brusco Vision today.

What is refractive surgery?

Refractive surgery is a transformative process designed to correct common vision problems, such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. These common vision problems are known as refractive errors in the eye, which happen when light is not bent correctly, causing blurred vision. Refractive surgery, a key area in ophthalmology, primarily seeks to enhance the eye’s ability to focus, correcting visual impairment through the refraction of light on the retina and improving overall visual perception. Common vision impairments treated through refractive surgery include myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism, and presbyopia, which are related to the shape and aging of the cornea or lens. By altering the cornea’s shape or placing a lens inside the eye, refractive surgery can significantly sharpen vision. Also known as vision correction or laser eye surgery, this medical field has experienced significant advancements, enabling numerous individuals to achieve better vision than they have ever had before. Brusco Vision, leveraging these advances, offers state-of-the-art refractive surgery options tailored to meet the unique vision needs of each patient, striving to enhance their visual acuity and overall quality of life.

What are the most common types of refractive surgery?

The most common types of refractive surgery include Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis (LASIK), Photorefractive Keratectomy (PRK), Small Incision Lenticule Extraction (SMILE), Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE), and Phakic Intraocular Lens (ICL) Implants. LASIK, a well-known procedure, involves creating a thin flap in the cornea and reshaping the underlying tissue with an excimer laser, improving the eye’s focus. PRK, similar to LASIK surgery, reshapes the cornea with an excimer laser but does not involve flap creation; instead, it removes the cornea’s outer layer, allowing it to regrow and change the corneal curvature. SMILE, a newer technique, creates and removes a lens-shaped piece of corneal tissue through a small incision, altering the corneal shape. RLE, is also known as Custom Lens Replacement (CLR) and is a procedure that replaces the eye’s natural lens with an artificial one, correcting refractive errors. Custom Lens Replacement is particularly beneficial for presbyopia or severe hyperopia. Phakic IOL Implants, like EVO ICL, involve placing a lens inside the eye alongside the natural lens, suitable for those with significant myopia or when corneal procedures are not advised.

Choosing the right refractive surgery involves considering factors like refractive error type and severity, patient age, eye health, lifestyle, and patient preferences. Each method has its own set of advantages, risks, and potential complications, including dry eyes, glare, and in rare instances, vision loss. Consequently, Brusco Vision emphasizes the importance of a comprehensive ophthalmologic assessment to select the most suitable surgical option for each individual.

Are refractive surgeries safe and effective?

Refractive surgeries are generally safe and effective, especially when conducted by qualified and experienced refractive surgeons. The American Refractive Surgery Council study reports that with LASIK, the most common refractive surgery procedure, 99% of patients achieving better than 20/40 vision and more than 90% achieving 20/20 or better. A 2018 paper in the International Journal of Ophthalmology, reports that the overall complication rate for refractive surgeries, including LASIK, PRK, and other methods, is estimated to be less than 1%. The key to maximizing safety and success lies in careful patient selection and thorough preoperative evaluation. These procedures have been refined over the years, leading to high success rates and significant improvements in vision for many patients. However, like any surgical intervention, they come with potential risks such as dry eye syndrome, infection, keratitis, and in rare cases, corneal haze, necessitating careful patient evaluation. It is important for patients to have a detailed discussion with their eye doctor about the benefits and possible complications of refractive surgery. This conversation should cover everything from the expected improvements in vision to the rare but possible risks involved. Making an informed decision is crucial, and at Brusco Vision, we ensure our patients have all the necessary information to understand the scope and nature of the refractive surgery they are considering.

Clear Vision, Clear Choice: Discover Refractive Surgery with Brusco Vision

Refractive surgery offers a promising path to improved vision, reducing dependency on glasses or contact lenses. With a range of procedures like LASIK, PRK, SMILE, CLR, ICL, and Phakic IOL Implants, Brusco Vision is equipped to address various vision impairments, customized to individual needs. Our commitment to using leading-edge technology, combined with the expertise of our eye surgeon, ensures safety and effectiveness, providing you with the best possible visual outcomes.

Take the first step towards clearer vision. Contact Brusco Vision today to learn more about how refractive surgery can transform your life and to schedule your personalized consultation. Let us help you see the world with new clarity and freedom.

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More FAQ’s About What Is Refractive Surgery

What types of vision problems can refractive surgery correct?

Refractive surgery at Brusco Vision can correct a range of vision problems, including myopia (near-sightedness), hyperopia (far-sightedness), astigmatism (irregular corneal shape), and presbyopia (age-related near vision decline). These procedures modify the eye’s focusing ability, improving visual acuity and reducing dependence on corrective lenses.

How long does refractive surgery take?

At Brusco Vision, refractive surgery is typically a quick procedure, often completed in 15 to 30 minutes per eye. The actual laser treatment takes only a few minutes, while preparation and post-operative checks add to the total time, ensuring a safe and precise outcome.

Is refractive surgery painful?

Patients at Brusco Vision usually experience little to no pain during refractive surgery, thanks to numbing eye drops. Some may feel pressure or mild discomfort during the procedure, but it is generally well-tolerated, with post-operative recovery often being pain-free.

What is the recovery time for refractive surgery?

Recovery times can vary based on the type of refractive surgery, but many patients at Brusco Vision report significant visual improvement within 24 hours after surgery. Full recovery and stabilization of vision may take several weeks to a few months, depending on the specific procedure and individual healing processes.

How do I know if I am a candidate for refractive surgery?

Eligibility for refractive surgery at Brusco Vision involves a thorough eye examination and assessment of your vision needs, health history, and lifestyle. Factors like corneal thickness, eye health, age, and the degree of refractive error are considered to determine suitability for surgery.

What are the risks associated with refractive surgery?

While refractive surgery is safe, it carries potential risks like any surgical procedure. Common concerns include dry eyes, glare, and fluctuations in vision. Brusco Vision prioritizes patient education on these risks to ensure informed decision-making and personalized care.

Can refractive surgery eliminate the need for glasses or contact lenses completely?

Many patients at Brusco Vision experience significant vision improvement after refractive surgery, with a large number able to forego glasses or contact lenses for most activities. However, results can vary based on individual factors, and some may still need corrective lenses for certain tasks, especially as they age.

How long do the results of refractive surgery last?

Refractive surgery results, especially from procedures like LASIK, are generally long-lasting. Changes made to the cornea are permanent; however, natural age-related vision changes, such as presbyopia, may still require reading glasses in later life.

What technology does Brusco Vision use for refractive surgery?

Brusco Vision utilizes state-of-the-art technology for refractive surgeries, including the latest laser systems and diagnostic tools. This advanced technology ensures precise, customized treatments, optimizing outcomes and enhancing safety for all patients.

Can refractive surgery be redone or revised if needed?

Yes, in some cases, refractive surgery can be revised or enhanced, depending on the initial results and remaining corneal thickness. Brusco Vision evaluates each patient’s unique situation and visual needs to determine the feasibility and advisability of a secondary procedure.

How does Brusco Vision utilize advanced technology in refractive surgeries to ensure precision and safety?

Brusco Vision employs advanced technologies like wavefront analysis, femtosecond lasers for mode locking, and corneal topography in refractive surgeries to accurately assess and correct refractive errors. These technologies help in treating conditions like keratoconus, cataracts, and myopia by precisely mapping the cornea’s optical power, ensuring clear image formation on the retina. For cataract and lens replacement surgery, multifocal intraocular lenses and implantable contact lenses are used to restore vision, often through clear lens extraction or cataract surgery, ensuring patients receive optimal care tailored to their unique visual needs.

Michael A. Brusco, MD, FACS, is the founder and medical director of Brusco Vision – the premier practice dedicated to changing lives through vision correction in Washington DC and the DMV. He is a board-certified and award-winning refractive surgery subspecialist who has successfully performed over 40,000 corneal-based vision correction procedures, such as high-definition all-laser LASIK and PRK. Dr. Brusco graduated with honors from Harvard College, was awarded the STAAR Top 100 International Surgeon honor multiple years, and is a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, the American Society of Cataract & Refractive Surgeons, the American Medical Association, and the Refractive Surgery Alliance. He is a founding member of the World College of Refractive Surgery & Visual Sciences, an organization on a global scale. Most recently, Dr. Brusco personally was performing close to 1% of all LASIK procedures in the US annually.

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