LASIK Laser Vision
Are you seeking a Houston LASIK surgeon who is dedicated to excellence in ophthalmology? LASIK is a laser eye surgery procedure that has improved the quality of life for many people by improving vision and reducing dependence on glasses and contact lenses. Slade & Baker surgeons performed the first LASIK in the United States and have the longest experience with the procedure. Dr. Stephen Slade and Dr. Bennett Walton are surgeons dedicated to combining their experience with the latest technology for a personalized experience. A true “surgeon’s surgeon, Dr. Slade has performed laser eye surgery and refractive surgery on more than 450 other ophthalmic surgeons and hundreds more from other medical specialties. Our patients come not only from Houston and throughout Texas, but from many other U.S. states and countries worldwide.
How LASIK works
LASIK is an acronym for Laser in-situ Keratomileusis, and is one of the most commonly performed types of laser eye surgery. This procedure is safe, effective, and has very few side effects. This procedure has helped millions of people see clearly without dependence on glasses or contact lenses. It has made active lifestyle people happy again. Imagine being able to workout without glasses or see the alarm clock in the middle of the night! For contact lens wearers, there is no more bother putting lenses in, no more scratchy lenses hitting your eyelids and no more solutions. LASIK is a quick and comfortable vision correction procedure with an excellent track record of success. Proper pre-operative evaluations are critical to the success of this procedure for you. To get a better understanding regarding whether or not you would be a candidate please see our LASIK candidacy page. To learn about what happens during this eye surgery process please read below.
Nearsighted individuals typically have problems seeing well at a distance and are forced to wear glasses or contact lenses. The nearsighted eye is usually longer than a normal eye, and its cornea may also be steeper. Therefore, when light passes through the cornea and lens, it is focused in front of the retina. This will make distant images appear blurred.
There are several refractive surgery solutions available to correct nearly all levels of nearsightedness.
Farsighted individuals typically develop problems reading up close before the age of 40. The farsighted eye is usually slightly shorter than a normal eye and may have a flatter cornea. Thus, the light of distant objects focuses behind the retina unless the natural lens can compensate fully. Near objects require even greater focusing power to be seen clearly and therefore, blur more easily.
LASIK, Refractive Lens Exchange and Contact lenses are a few of the options available to correct farsightedness.
Asymmetric steepening of the cornea or natural lens causes light to be focused unevenly, which is the main optical problem in astigmatism. To individuals with uncorrected astigmatism, images may look blurry or shadowed. Astigmatism can accompany any form of refractive error and is very common.
Astigmatism can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses, corneal relaxing incisions, laser vision correction, and special implant lenses.
Questions to ask your LASIK Houston surgeon
When you are conducting an interview or having a pre-operative LASIK eye surgery diagnosis you may want to discuss the following LASIK questions:
- Describe your experience as a laser eye surgery expert?
- How mush does LASIK cost? Does it vary depending on my visual parameters?
- What is the difference between LASIK and LASEK?
- What is PRK and why was this approved by the FDA before LASIK eye surgery?
- What is the relationship between Dr. Slade and Dr. Baker? Who will do what parts of my eye care?
- What is the best LASIK Technology?
- How can laser eye surgery help me?
- What are the risks of LASIK?
- What are your credentials and educational history?
- What makes a great LASIK surgeon?
Understanding Your Laser Vision Correction Candidacy
There is perhaps nothing more important in the LASIK eye surgery process than determining your candidacy. If you are familiar with someone who has not had a good result the problems typically stem from poor judgement of candidacy. The candidacy process begins with a thorough eye health evaluation to check the overall health of your eye as well as the corneal thickness.
Understanding the Cost of LASIK in Houston
At Slade and Baker Vision Center we try to make LASIK pricing easy by simply including everything in one price. We may not have the cheapest LASIK cost in Houston, but you will not be tricked by a $299 LASIK advertisement. We are not the least expensive eye doctors but rather strive to be the best, and with the best technology. When shopping for price, make sure you are getting the whole cost and not just a “bait and switch.” Does the quoted price include everything, the exams before, the care after, all the tests, and all fees? Our prices are all inclusive, one price covers all the surgery and workup. It is important to remember “you get what you pay for” so potential candidates that are “price shopping” should remember they are shopping for one of the most important things in their lives, their vision.
LASIK costs have become hard to compare due to corporate entities that emerged in the field of laser vision correction during the late 1990’s. LASIK’s success rate and popularity attracted numerous chains offering discount pricing. Aggressive advertising campaigns followed that often promised a low price simply to lure the patient in the door. After arriving at the FREE LASIK consultation most patients quickly realized that the advertised price would not work for them because their vision was outside the parameters. Very few patients paid the low initial advertised price. Indeed, according to a South Florida Business Journal report, the national operations director of a well-known discount center stated that their average customer paid close to $1800 per eye, even though the advertised price was only $299. Several of these chains ended up bankrupt, after paying fines to the SCO for fraudulent advertising.
The Process of Undergoing LASIK
These are the 4 main steps of the LASIK eye surgery process.
- Consultation & Screening
- Pre-Operative Eye Exam
- The Day of Surgery
During your initial free screening, we will thoroughly examine your eyes and perform comprehensive testing to make sure that LASIK eye surgery is the right procedure for you. A medical and eye history will be taken and several tests will be performed, including: dry eye testing , visual acuity and refractive error, screening visual field , pupil size in low & medium light , ocular pressure , general health of the eyes , corneal topography & corneal thickness.
Bladeless LASIK Technology
In the past, the corneal flap was created by a mechanical device, which used a blade (microkeratome). Today, we offer our patients ALL LASER LASIK using the IntraLASE® femtosecond laser to create the corneal flap, thereby adding a higher level of safety and precision to the LASIK procedure. Using this Blade-Free LASIK procedure, the IntraLase laser delivers over millions of tiny, micron-sized bubbles that gently separate the layers of corneal tissue. This creates a customized corneal flap of the desired thickness, size, orientation, and location. This unprecedented level of control also allows more patients to qualify for LASIK and virtually eliminates many of the complications associated with the past mechanical approach. Along with being the first LASIK surgeon in the US, Dr. Slade has the longest experience in the United States with this remarkable blade-free technology.
After LASIK Eye Surgery
What happens after LASIK?
The protective layer of the cornea will remain intact after your LASIK surgery in Houston, but patients will be required to use antibiotic and anti-inflammatory drop for about a week. Additional eye drops will be suggested to minimize any dryness and increase comfort during the healing process. Our LASIK locations will also instruct patients to wear protective eye shields at night to prevent unconscious rubbing or bumping of your eyes.
Did You Know?
Houston LASIK FACTS:
Doctors have been performing LASIK for over 2 decades and to date approximately over 40 million LASIK procedures have been performed since 1991! (Fun Fact this was the same year Dr. Slade performed the first LASIK surgery in the US!).
LASIK vs. Contact Lenses. What is Riskier?
Here is a topic that we deal with on a daily basis, and perhaps you have even considered it once or twice. We wanted to have an open discussion with our readers about LASIK and how they feel about it in relation to wearing contacts, as that is usually a day-to-day struggle.
In fact, many people (including some eye professionals) felt that contacts were safer than laser vision correction surgery (LASIK) until the last 10 years or so.
This is where the experts at Slade & Baker Vision want to share some key facts from an extensive literature review of various studies published between 2014 and 2015. (Masters et al., JCRS 2017 Jan;43(1):67-73.)
The review of the medical literature indicated that:
- Use of any non-daily disposable contact for 1 year appears to be associated with 3 times the risk of having a bacterial infection in the cornea compared with LASIK.
- Even use of daily disposable contact lenses for 5 years appears to be associated with 3 times the risk of having a bacterial infection in the cornea compared with LASIK.
- Use of daily disposable contact lenses for 1 year is not statistically different in bacterial infection risk from LASIK!
It will be more difficult to compare the risk of getting an infection in the next 30 years with the chance of complications after a surgery. However, what all the information above tells us is that contact lenses are not always a safer choice than LASIK surgery.
How long have you been wearing contacts? How much longer do you plan to wear them? If you do choose to wear contacts, please be diligent about perfect contact lens hygiene. And make sure your contact lenses are newer models that allow as much oxygen through as possible.
We find day in and day out in our clinic that contact lenses and LASIK are very safe, although there is always a small risk of complications from both.
Few insurance policies cover Laser Vision Correction, however, we would be happy to check yours when you come in for a consult. Remember patient financing plans are also available. We use Care Credit with 0% Financing Options.
Because we make every effort to make sure the eye is numb, patients tell us they feel only slight discomfort, not pain during the procedure. After the procedure, most people report a slightly irritated eye for a few hours, similar to an eyelash getting in your eye. But pain is subjective, and when you learn more about the procedure you’ll form your own opinion of what to expect.
To this date there have been zero reported cases of total loss of vision.