A BRIEF OVERVIEW OF THE SURGERY – Laser eye surgery is a well-understood and practiced procedure, with tens of thousands of procedures being performed in Canada every year. It is one of the safest surgical procedures you can have, with a success rate well north of 95%.

The procedure takes approximately 1 hour to perform, though only 15 minutes of that is actual surgery (the rest is prep).

The eye is numbed and thoroughly disinfected/cleaned. Once ready, your eye is held open using specialized equipment and the surgeon gets to work. You will be asked to stare at a fixed point (clearly identified prior to surgery so you know what to expect). The laser itself is only activated for 5 – 90 seconds (as required to correct your refractive error).

You will be observed for a brief period post surgery and then released. You will not be able to drive, so please ensure you have arranged transportation.

 – In Canada there are three main versions of laser eye surgery performed: LASIK, LASEK, and PRK. While each accomplishes the same outcome, the process of accessing the corneal cells varies among each.

  • LASIK – laser assisted in situ keratomileusis – A flap in the epithelial cells on top of the cornea is created using a keratome. The surgeon folds the flap to the side, exposing the cornea, and then directs the laser to correct vision. LASIK is considered the version of the surgery with the shortest recovery periods and least likelihood of complications.

  • LASEK – laser epithelial keratomileusis – In LASEK, the surgeon completely removes the epithelial flap, preserving the flap in solution and placing it back over the eye once the surgery is complete. Compared to LASIK, LASEK has a slightly longer recovery period and may cause a bit more discomfort. However, it is applicable to a larger base of patients.

  • PRK – photorefractive keratectomy – In PRK, the epithelial flap is discarded completely. The eye will grow new epithelial cells within a few days of surgery. PRK is ideal for those with thin corneas, or for those where complications from the epithelial flap may arise. PRK has the longest recovery period of the three, but also the lowest chances of complications related to the epithelial flap.

WHO IS A CANDIDATE FOR SURGERY? The vast majority of Canadians with corrective lenses are suitable for surgery. In order to be a candidate your eyes must be in good health- prior injuries, infections, or eye surgeries may rule out laser eye surgery as an option.

Laser eye surgery can correct most refractive errors and prescriptions. It can also be used to treat presbyopia, though its results are usually not permanent in the case of presbyopia.

how laser surgery corrects your vision

Suitable for nearly all prescriptions and refractive errors, laser eye surgery is a powerful process that utilizes a precision laser to physically reshape the cornea and correct the refractive error that causes impaired vision.

interested in learning more? Schedule a consultation

Before having surgery performed, your eyes must be assessed in order to ensure they are suitable for surgery. Call us today or visit one of our four offices – located in High River, Nanton, Okotoks, and Vulcan – to have your eyes assessed by an optometrist.