LASIK is an incredibly effective treatment for the permanent correction of refractive errors such as myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. It may also be an effective way to treat night vision issues including low vision along with issues like glare, halos, and starbursts around lights.
The Patient-Reported Outcomes with LASIK (PROWL) questionnaire, a 2014 collaboration between the Food and Drug Administration, National Eye Institute, and Department of Defense to determine LASIK outcomes for military and non-military individuals, found very few patients reported an increase in night vision difficulties after LASIK. In fact, many experienced improvements in night vision, including a reduction in glare and halos around lights.
Broken into two groups – PROWL-1 for military and PROWL-2 for non – this questionnaire found that night vision difficulty in the PROWL-1 group dropped from 41% to 23%, and in the PROWL-2 group from 37% to 27% after LASIK. While a handful of the study’s 575 participants reported increased glare, halos, or starbursts around lights, a vast majority reported either an improvement or no difference in night vision.
It is important to remember that halos and glare may accompany LASIK recovery. In these cases, the issue is not a side-effect, but rather a part of the healing process that will self-correct as time passes. During your follow-up visits, we can discuss any reactions you are experiencing to determine if you are simply recovering or if further correction will be needed.
Reducing Risks for Complications
The board-certified ophthalmologists at Seeta Eye Centers offer various LASIK techniques to help meet the individual needs of each patient. Options such as IntraLase and custom LASIK may help reduce the risks of complications such as night vision difficulties. These bladeless techniques eliminate issues that may accompany flap creation with a microkeratome, and are often the best choice for patients with higher-order aberrations. We will discuss all of your options during your initial consultation to help ensure you are making the best choice for your eyes.
In addition to advanced LASIK offerings, we use the Pentacam system to analyze the structure of the eye and accurately determine which options will be most effective for each individual. This same system can be used post-LASIK to detect issues, including problems causing night vision difficulties, which may require a secondary surgery.
LASIK revision is uncommon, but it can be very helpful in cases where vision is not optimally corrected the first time around.
Some patients may be better candidates for PRK – a refractive error correction surgery that does not require the creation of a corneal flap. PRK utilizes the same technology as LASIK to sculpt the cornea and is equally effective at producing 20/20 vision or better, but the epithelium is gently removed during PRK to provide access without making a corneal incision. This may help to reduce the risk of night vision complications during and after recovery, although it may take up to six months for final results from PRK to be realized.
Contact Us to Learn More
The experienced eye surgeons at Seeta Eye Centers are here to answer any questions you may have about LASIK and night vision, and to help you determine which laser vision correction service will be most effective for your needs. Call us at 845-454-1025 to schedule a consultation at our Poughkeepsie or Fishkill office and learn how we can help you find freedom from glasses and contact lenses for life.