LASIK surgery can be a life-changing event that permanently reshapes the cornea to correct vision. As potential LASIK patients begin to research surgeons to perform the procedure, many will come across low-cost corporate chains that advertise the procedure for as low as $250 per eye. When it comes to selecting a LASIK surgeon, it is important to look at more than just the advertised cost. Patients should look at the qualifications and education of the surgeon, the technology being used and other patient reviews when selecting a LASIK provider.
Private Practice vs. Corporate Discount Chain
LASIK received FDA approval in 1998, and over the course of twenty years, many advancements have been made in the technology used during surgery. Many discount LASIK companies are able to offer the procedure at a discounted rate because they are using outdated technology. This may lead to a higher risk for complications following surgery.
Today, LASIK surgery is usually performed using a femtosecond laser. This is also known as blade-free LASIK, and is the only type of LASIK performed by the doctors at Louisiana Eye & Laser. During the blade-free LASIK procedure, the femtosecond laser is used to create a thin flap in the cornea. An excimer laser is then used to reshape the underlying corneal tissue. This is how your vision is corrected. The last step is for the flap to be returned to the original position. Older LASIK technology uses a bladed surgical tool to create the corneal flap. This can lead to more discomfort during the procedure and a longer healing time.
A private LASIK practice, such as Louisiana Eye & Laser, provides personalized care that most corporate LASIK chains are unable to offer. Discount LASIK chains are usually focused on performing the maximum number of surgeries possible each day. As a result, time spent with patients is kept to a minimum, which is mostly just the time spent in the operating room. All pre- and post-op care is provided by another optometrist or ophthalmologist.
As Louisiana Eye & Laser, a LASIK patient is going to spend time with their LASIK surgeon, as well as with a dedicated support staff including the refractive coordinator. During the initial LASIK consultation, a patient will have plenty of time to ask questions and learn about the procedure that will be performed. When the patient meets with his or her LASIK surgeon, the doctor will review the procedure and explain how a 3D image of the eye will be taken prior to surgery. This image allows the doctor to create a customized surgical plan that will help deliver the best vision results possible following surgery.
Following surgery, patients will return to Louisiana Eye & Laser for a follow-up appointment to ensure proper healing is taking place. Many corporate chains don’t offer this service and require the patient to see another doctor for follow-up care.
Low Cost Really Isn’t Low Cost
For many patients, paying $250 per eye for LASIK is more of a gimmick to get patients in the door. In order to qualify for this price, patients must meet strict criteria, such as your astigmatism must be within a certain range and your cornea can’t be too thick or too thin. However, once patients have their initial exam, often times additional fees are added or it is determined they aren’t a candidate for the advertised price.
LASIK is a big investment that people consider for many months, even years, before moving forward with the surgery. However, the cost of LASIK does make sense. The average cost of prescription glasses and sunglasses, contact lenses and contact lens supplies is over $900 per year! Imagine the amount of money you can save in your lifetime by investing in blade-free LASIK.
At Louisiana Eye & Laser, we want to help make LASIK affordable to our patients. We offer financing with zero percent interest for up to 24 months. In addition, we are offering $1,000 off the cost of LASIK.
For patients with a flex spending account or health savings account, you can use those pre-tax dollars towards the cost of LASIK – that may be up to 50% off the cost of surgery!
If you have been considering LASIK, now is the time to act! Contact Louisiana Eye & Laser today to schedule a FREE consultation.