View all information on Laser Vision Correction below. With a brief overview first followed by a detailed description of everything you might want to know.
Laser vision correction is an alternative to glasses and contact lenses that can help you see more, naturally. The concept behind laser vision correction is simple—reshaping the front of the eye to change its focusing power. Laser eye surgery has now developed to the point where not only can it provide you with the same vision that glasses and contact lenses do, but in many cases, can provide you with an improvement on what glasses and contact lenses provide.
View all detailed information you may want to know, regarding Laser Eye Sugery.
LASIK vision correction is an alternative to glasses and contact lenses that can help you see more, naturally. The concept behind laser vision correction is simple—reshaping the front of the eye to change its focusing power. LASIK involves making a flap with a femtosecond laser and then using the excimer laser to reshape the cornea under the flap. It leads to a very fast recovery with patients frequently seeing 20/20 and better within 24 hours with little or no discomfort. Laser eye surgery has now developed to the point where not only can it provide you with the same vision that glasses and contact lenses do, but in many cases, can provide you with an improvement on what glasses and contact lenses provide.
LASIK (Laser Assisted Intrastromal Keratomileusis) does not just mean LASIK at the Wellington Eye Clinic. We have 5 profiles that we regularly use in order to achieve the very best possible result for your procedure:
3. Custom-Q (Asphericity-Guided)
4. OcuLink (treatments customised by topographic data from the Pentacam / Oculyzer)
5. Contoura Vision (treatments customised by topographic data from the Topolyzer).
*Contoura Vision is the latest innovation from WaveLight and the recent FDA study approval is based on the best results yet seen in an FDA study on laser vision correction. See more here Topography-guided LASIK FDA Study
These 5 profiles can be applied to LASIK, LASEK and PRK / TE-PRK.
LASEK or PRK or TE-PRK are all treatments using the excimer laser to reshape the cornea. The difference between these procedures and LASIK is that these procedures are done without a flap i.e. they are performed on the corneal surface after the corneal epithelium (skin) is removed . The concept behind laser vision correction is simple—reshaping the front of the eye to change its focusing power. The recovery is longer than with LASIK but the results are identical: excellent vision. Laser eye surgery has now developed to the point where not only can it provide you with the same vision that glasses and contact lenses do, but in many cases, can provide you with an improvement on what glasses and contact lenses provide.
LASEK (Laser Assisted Epithelial Keratomileusis) is where the epithelium (skin) is gently rolled back off the corneal surface and then once the laser treatment is over, replaced back over the cornea before a bandage contact lens is placed on the eye.
PRK (Photo-Refractive Keratectomy) is where the epithelium is removed and then a bandage contact lens is placed on the eye following the laser treatment.
TE-PRK (Trans-Epithelial PRK) or Trans-PRK is where the epithelium is removed by the same laser that does the correction and then a bandage contact lens is placed on the eye.
In ALL of the above treatments (LASEK, PRK and TE-PRK) the epithelium is entirely replaced over the following 4-6 days. The outcomes between the 3 different procedures is identical.
The most common reason for doing surface treatments include insufficient corneal thickness for LASIK and some contact sports.
SMILE is a 3rd generation laser vision correction procedure with PRK being first generation, LASIK being second generation and SMILE being third generation.
It is currently used for the treatment of myopia (short-sightedness) and astigmatism especially when the amount is higher (e.g. above minus 5.00D). The Zeiss VisuMax laser creates the lenticule within the cornea and then this small sliver of corneal tissue is removed from within the cornea without making a flap. The easiest way to understand SMILE is to think of it as being a LASIK but without the flap or alternatively to think of it as “keyhole LASIK.”
There are many forms of Laser Vision Correction. See the different procedures with these animations / videos
LASIK Evaluations are available from Monday to Saturday 8.30am – 4.00pm depending on the day. Appointments last 2-2.5 hours and on the day your eyes will be dilated so you will be unable to drive following the appointment. Please note that dilation can last 6-10 hours. During the consultation, we do a full eye health check, perform the required scans and then you meet with your surgeon to determine which is the best option for you. Please note that contact lenses must be left out two days prior to an evaluation (soft lenses) and three weeks (for hard lenses) as they distort the natural shape of the cornea.
Watch this video if you are interested in seeing what awaits you when you enter the laser theatre.
Important! Proceed with caution as the content could be considered graphic by some.
You need not be afraid at all. Almost 100% of people say that the experience was much better than going to the dentist and not nearly as bad as they had imagined it would be. It’s important to note that the part that most people fear most (cutting the flap during LASIK) is done using nothing more than air bubbles!
After the Surgery is done we continue to monitor your progress and the steps a typical patient takes are as follows:
Come back for your post-operative visits on day 1 (next day), 6 weeks and 6 months later for LASIK and SMILE. For LASEK / PRK and TE-PRK more visits are required: Day 1, Day 6 (to remove the bandage contact lens), 1 Month, 3 Months and 6 Months later.
We can tell you all we like about the procedures, about their value for you, about how much they hurt or don’t hurt and how well you see afterwards but nothing means as much to someone thinking about laser vision correction than talking to someone that has actually had it done. These videos will introduce you to real people and you will hear their stories. There is also a real-time LASIK procedure for those brave enough to want to watch it before having their own story. It’s important to note that the part that most people fear most (cutting the flap with LASIK) is done using nothing more than air bubbles!
Watch genuine Wellington Eye Clinic patients go through the process of thinking about vision correction, going through the evaluation process and having the surgery performed.
“I wanted to see as well as possible. I was looking for perfect vision basically.”
We have treated many medical colleagues including international colleagues and ophthalmic surgeons that have chosen the Wellington Eye Clinic for their own surgery. Knowing that specialists in the field have chosen us should give you some peace of mind that you are in experienced hands at the Wellington Eye Clinic.
This is a very special testimonial from one of the many colleagues that have been treated at the Wellington Eye Clinic. Professor Frohn could have had his surgery anywhere that he wished to and he decided to trust his vision to us.
“For many years I was using contact lenses, but these were no longer good for me. I considered LASIK on my eyes. As I am an experienced eye surgeon myself, I had to consider, where I should visit to perform the procedure.
As I have known Dr Arthur Cummings and the Wellington Eye Clinic for many years, I decided to visit Dr Cummings. His excellence, his warm-hearted art, his attitude to perfection are well known and convinced me to give my eyes to his hands. Also, his staff and colleagues are so kind and care about absolutely everything, that I just felt like visiting my family rather than a clinic.
The procedure lead to a perfect result. Today for more than 40 years it is the first time, that I am able to look at my environment without any prosthesis. It is an overwhelming experience, and still after a week I sit down and only enjoy looking – at everything: I do not read the newspaper, but look at the contrasts changing on the paper in the light and those little particles in the material. It was three days after LASIK that I could do my work as a microsurgeon again, everything worked perfectly.
As a result, I am convinced, the Wellington Eye Clinic and Dr Arthur Cummings are clearly recommended.”
Andreas Frohn – Professor of Ophthalmology at Tubingen University and cataract and laser eye surgeon
Bruce flew in from the USA for his surgery. SimLC is a combination treatment of Topography-Guided PRK followed by Corneal Cross-Linking and is used for the treatment of keratoconus or ectasia.
Just days after his surgery Bruce was taking the most beautiful photographs of Dublin and Ireland that can be seen in the accompanying video. Please see Bruce’s website for further information: Beautiful Ireland
More ophthalmologists have had LASIK done themselves than any other group of individuals. In fact, more than 60% of ophthalmic surgeons that have specialised in refractive / laser surgery have had LASIK done themselves if they are suitable candidates
No better testimonial than the doctors that are performing refractive surgery are personal believers in refractive surgery
**Does the procedure hurt?*
“This is the first question I am always asked by patients and I always reassure them that it does not hurt at all! People think of blades and cutting when considering eye surgery but nowadays with the laser creating the flap, it’s all done using air bubbles and no blades at all. I have frequently been told by patients after their surgery that it was a less painful and a less traumatic experience than going to the dentist”
Which type of Laser is the best to get?
“We will do a comprehensive evaluation before making this decision. You will very likely find this examination the most thorough eye examination that you have ever had. If you are a candidate for LASIK then I would recommend Contoura Vision as this is the latest treatment available and provides the best results in the quickest time frame. It has the potential to have you seeing better after the surgery without glasses than you ever did before the surgery with glasses or contact lenses.”
How long will it take before I can see?
_“With LASIK the visual recovery is very fast and by the very first evening most can already see a huge improvement. At the check-up visit the very next morning many patients are already seeing 20/20 or better.”_*
Laser Eye Surgery at Clinics like the Wellington Eye Clinic is considered to be very safe.
Statistically it has been shown to be even safer than extended contact lens wear.
At the Wellington Eye Clinic we have been performing laser eye surgery now for approaching 25 years, and after more than 50,000 procedures it has been demonstrated to be a very safe procedure, so there is no reason to expect that we are going to see any change going forward.
Laser surgery today is arguably safer than it was 20 years ago because technology has improved a great deal not only in terms of the way it is performed, but also in terms of identifying the patients who are ideal candidates.
If you are not a perfect candidate for laser surgery we would advise you not to have the procedure done. However we can often recommend another option for you as today there potentially other alternatives in the Clinic.
(Note that at the Wellington Eye Clinic the screening is always carried out by a Surgeon.)
So today if we deem you to be a good candidate for Laser Eye Surgery at your consultation, you know you are having a safe procedure.
If you have good near vision but you cannot see far away (a condition called short-sightedness, near-sightedness or myopia) this can be corrected.
It is also possible to perform the procedure for someone who has the opposite problem, for somebody who can only see in the distance but cannot see up close (a condition called hypermetropia)
The same is true for patients who are have more difficulty reading as they get a little older (Presbyopia). Perhaps reading that menu, or the sensation that your arms need to grow longer and longer in order to do so.
What is common is to correct for both near vision and distance vision simultaneously.
This laser eye surgery technique is referred to as Mono-vision.
One eye is corrected for distance vision and the one eye for near-vision. This will leave a person totally free of glasses.
Mono-vision starts making more sense when you are approaching your mid-40’s and starting to become Presbyopic.
Suddenly you notice that you cannot see up close any more.
While considering Mono-vision at the Wellington Eye Clinic it is normal to ask our patients to undergo a contact lens trial.
This trial gives the patient an idea of what the result will be after their surgery and affords us the opportunity meet their satisfaction before they make a commitment to have the surgery
What exactly is involved in an Assessment to determine if someone is suitable for laser eye surgery?
An assessment for Laser Eye Surgery at the Wellington Eye Clinic takes about two hours.
Although that can seem lengthy, it is necessary to perform all of the tests required for a thorough evaluation.
Consultations are carried out by a Surgeon at the Wellington Eye Clinic. It is this Doctor who will meet you on your first visit and make the final decision about your suitability and will go through the benefits and risks involved in any recommended procedure.
What do you want from the surgery?
The first thing that needs to be determined is what the person wants from surgery.
Many people want perfect distance vision.
Many people want perfect distance vision but in some cases this means that they might need glasses for reading.
Some are surprised to find out that once they hit their mid-40’s they are going to need glasses for reading.
How healthy is your eye?
The second thing we need to do is to do a number of special tests that give us indications of the health, the thickness and the shape of the cornea.
We need to make sure that people do not have conditions that disqualify them from LASIK or LASEK.
Making sure that the eye is healthy involves a number of diagnostic devices and examinations.
We need to make sure that your tear production is adequate.
If it is not, we are going to first work on your tears to improve them before considering laser surgery. You need to be able to produce a certain level of tears for consideration.
What is your prescription?
Next we need to find out what the precise prescription (exact strength of your glasses or contact lens) of your eyes.
In the first instance this is done without putting any drops in your eyes.
We then put a drop in the eyes which paralyzes your lens. This takes about forty five minutes to work and it also dilates your pupil. Once this drop has worked we repeat your prescription to make sure the prescription is correct.
Examination of the back of the eye
When the pupil is wide we can also have a very good look on the inside of the eye. Once that is done then we know medically you are fit to go ahead.
Note that you will not be able to drive after the Consultation. You will have had your pupils dilated, and should not drive for 6-10 hours after meeting the Consultant. Also, if you wear contact lens you will need to be out of these for a time before the assessment.
The answer to this question depends on to a great degree on which type of laser eye surgery that you have.
There are three types of laser eye surgery. LASIK, LASEK or PRK, and SMILE.
LASIK is where the doctor creates a flap, and generally recovery is faster.
If you have LASIK done then you can go back to things like golf and running and those sorts of things within a day or so.
If you want to go swimming you would wait for a couple of weeks. Although it is advisable to wear goggles for two weeks after the initial two week period.
In the event that you do contact sports like karate, boxing or rugby you should generally wait for six weeks.
As a guide:
Boxing – 6 weeks Bungee Jumping – 6 weeks Cycling – 1 day Soccer – 6 weeks Football GAA – 6 weeks Golf – 1 day Gym – 1 day Horse riding – 2 weeks Hurling – 6 weeks (if you always wear a helmet, 2 weeks is sufficient) Jogging- 1 day Karate – 6 weeks Parachute Jumping – 4 weeks Rugby – 6 weeks Sailing – 2 weeks SCUBA Diving – 3 months Skateboarding – 1 day Squash – 6 weeks Swimming – 2 weeks (and goggles for 2 weeks after) Surfing – 2 weeks Tennis - 1 week
If you have LASEK or PRK which is on the surface, there is nothing you cannot do within a week. The moment the surface is healed you can go back to enjoying sports.
If you have SMILE, (or keyhole laser surgery), because you do not have the flap you can also go back to participating in any sport within a couple of days after the surgery.
In fact for persons actively engaged in contact sports, SMILE might be an excellent option.
The most appropriate surgery would be determined and recommended at the time of your consultation by one of the Eye Surgeons at the clinic.
Mr Arthur Cummings, Medical Director, Consultant Eye Surgeon and Chair of the Department of Ophthalmology, Beacon Hospital, Dublin Ireland
*Do you want to keep your eye on the ball, or focused on the target without the hassle of corrective lenses?
Perhaps even improve your game?
These are very common reasons why patients opt to have laser eye surgery at the Wellington Eye Clinic. But how long can you expect to be out of action following a LASIK or LASEK procedure?*
1% of our patients will need repeat surgery at some point.
Why is this? (Click on the video for explanation)
Although very uncommon, laser eye surgery enhancement can happen as soon as six months or earlier after your initial procedure.
Today with the best laser LASEK, PRK and LASIK, Surgeons’ have a very high level of accuracy.
So for most corrections, in about 99% of cases, we cannot make the correction any better.
For 1% of patients on average we can make improvements on the initial surgery.
This is called a laser enhancement.
We do a little more laser in order to correct whatever the residual error might be.
Why do we see this in these cases?
If we program the laser, naturally it will do exactly what you expect right down to the micron or microscopic level.
However Surgeons will see some variation in the healing process from patient to patient.
One individual might heal differently to another. So at six months a small number of patients still have an error and that is corrected with an enhancement.
It is a fine-tuning, or a repeat of the surgery.
The Wellington Eye Clinic offers a Lifetime Warranty on laser eye surgery.
This means for example, that if at any time after the surgery your vision drops below driving standard and can be re-corrected using our laser with an enhancement, the treatment will be repeated at no cost.
We take pride in using what is widely regarded to be the best technology available. We have more diagnostic devices and therapeutic devices (lasers) than any other clinic that we are aware of. The safety and effectiveness of laser eye surgery are primarily a result of two inputs: the expertise of the consultant and the quality of the technology used during the surgery. The Wellington Eye Clinic can proudly state that it provides a world class standard on both fronts, unmatched anywhere else in Ireland
The Wellington Eye Clinic uses the most advanced lasers currently available for performing LASIK anywhere in the world. The Alcon WaveLight Refractive Suite at the Wellington Eye Clinic is the only such “Refractive Suite” in Ireland. This allows the Wellington Eye Clinic to provide the fastest laser combination in Ireland which ensures a safer and more effective treatment for the patient. This means a better vision for you, achieved through a quicker recovery time
The WaveLight Refractive Suite consists of the fastest combination of lasers available anywhere in the world to perform a LASIK procedure; The EX500 is a 500 Hz excimer laser and the FS200 is a 200 kHz Femtosecond laser.
The treatment times are faster, and hence safer, than with any other laser combination. A flap (See Glossary (1)) is created in around 6 seconds with the FS200 and the EX500 excimer laser completes the reshaping of the cornea in less than 2 seconds per diopter (2).
The WaveLight EX500 is a very small 0.9mm flying spot laser with a 500 Hz repetition rate. This laser takes 10 – 20% of the time that most other lasers do to do similar treatments. Together with the Tscherning wavefront analyzer or through its in-built prolate (3) profile enhancement, the EX500 produces superb clinical outcomes. The ablation profile (4) used is more optically natural than previous lasers. This is just one of the ways that the Wellington Eye Clinic is different from any other eye clinic in Ireland.
This laser produces aspheric/prolate corneas (remembering that prolate is better than oblate (5)), to help reduce any induced higher-order aberrations (6), (7), especially spherical aberrations (8). This ensures the best visual quality in all lighting conditions. The WaveLight Allegretto EX500 excimer laser has a wide diameter treatment zone, thereby making night vision problems very unlikely.
Some of the enhanced safety features found on the EX500: – Online pachymetry to ensure safety – this measures corneal thickness while the laser is working. – 6-D active cyclo-rotational eye tracker ensuring that the eye is always in the correct position and that the eye is immediately recognized by the laser. – The FS200 is the world’s fastest Femtosecond flap maker. It can also make channels for Intacs (9) for keratoconus (10) and do corneal transplant surgery. – The flap parameters can be controlled on the laser’s computer. – The 2 lasers are networked resulting in a higher degree of customization and safety than ever before.
This latest generation laser system is the first laser specifically designed for Custom LASIK. There are a number of very unique features of this laser system: It is a scanning spot laser which has a larger treatment zone. The large treatment zone reduces the problem of glare at night. The rapid laser pulse rate fires at a speed that is much faster than standard lasers. The rapid pulse rate reduces the treatment time thereby reducing corneal dehydration and promotes faster healing. It has an advanced eye tracker (11) for greater accuracy and eliminates the problem of patient movement during surgery. The eye tracker automatically locks on the pupillary centre making the procedure less anxiety provoking for patients. This laser is equipped to perform Wavefront-optimized treatments, resulting in less induction of corneal distortions and spherical aberrations. When needed, this laser can perform different customized procedures to reduce higher order aberrations like spherical aberration and coma. These include profiles like wavefront-guided, topography-guided, Pentacam-guided and Custom-Q. There are some advanced treatment profiles in the pipeline that the laser is already programmed to do that will be coming online within the next year.
While patients of the Wellington Eye Clinic have enjoyed the benefits of standard LASIK and PRK since 1990, the latest technology, namely Custom LASIK, is now available. We, at the Wellington Eye Clinic, are the first (and only) clinic in Ireland to use this advanced laser with outstanding results.
The small spot creates the desired contour of the correction profile with utmost precision, thereby minimizing the total overall ablation depth. Combining a wavefront optimized ablation profile with small laser spots allows for the creation of a large effective optical zone (12) with a very small transition area.
The WEC has additional lasers too in the form of the 2nd fastest laser in Ireland. This is the WaveLight Allegretto Eye-Q 400 Hz laser. We also have various microkeratomes (13) and will always use the technology most suited to your eyes. We have raised the bar once more by investing in the best technology to ensure the best outcomes for our patients.
Learn More about the wave light at myalcon
For VHI, AVIVA / Irish Life, Laya GMA and Glo Subscribers
For Eligible Taxpayers in The Republic Of Ireland: after your assessment by a consultant ophthalmologist, we will know which procedure suits you best. LASIK is the most common procedure performed. The wavefront-optimized option is the LASIK procedure that is used most widely but there are no increased fees levied for customised procedures like Contoura Vision for example. The above prices include the surgery itself as well as all post-operative visits and check-ups for a full twelve months following your procedure and in the unlikely event that they are necessary, any immediate enhancement surgeries needed to consolidate your new improved vision. Please note that there is an €80 consultation fee for a follow-up visit after 12 months.
The greatest saving from Laser Eye Surgery is the avoidance of the alternative costs of glasses and contact lenses. You might not believe it at first but living with glasses and contact lenses, even over as short as a five-year period, is actually more expensive than the once off investment of Laser Eye Surgery. Allow us to reiterate that point: along with the life enhancing freedom that laser eye surgery brings it is also less expensive than the awkward, inconvenient, uncomfortable alternative of glasses and contact lenses.
Enter your details to see how much you would save over the rest of your life by getting the surgery done.