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Fear of Eye Surgery

EVO ICL  | 

If you are considering vision correction surgery, it’s normal that you feel a bit apprehensive about the procedure. It’s our natural instinct to protect our eyes, so the thought of a laser or blade even approaching this delicate area understandably prompts anxiety or fear in many patients.

At Barnet Dulaney Perkins Eye Center, we have seen first-hand how life-changing vision correction surgery can be. Procedures like EVO Visian ICL Lens, LASIK, and PRK can help our patients free themselves from glasses or contact lenses and enjoy clear vision. That said, we’ve also seen our fair share of anxious patients, and each member of our team is dedicated to ensuring that your vision correction experience is as comfortable as possible.

Facts About Vision Correction Surgery

In our experience, many patients’ eye surgery fears have to do with the unknown—an educated patient is far less likely to fear vision correction surgery. To help you feel more comfortable while considering vision correction surgery, we’ve compiled some of the top vision correction surgery fears/myths we have encountered amongst our patients and the facts that help reduce their anxieties.

Fear #1: This is a new and risky procedure.

Actually, the first laser vision correction surgery was performed more than three decades ago, and technological advances have made these procedures low risk. Vision correction surgeries are amongst the most frequently performed procedures, with roughly 800,000 performed each year in the United States.[1] ICL procedures also have a very long, successful, and low-risk history. The first ICL surgeries were performed nearly 30 years ago, in 1993. ICL has been approved in the European Union since 1997, and more than 1 million ICLs have been implanted. In a survey, 99.4% of patients that have had the EVO Visian ICL procedure said they would have the procedure again.[2] The popularity of these procedures is due in large part to their effectiveness and low risk profile.

Fear # 2: Vision correction surgery is painful.

We will apply anesthetic eye drops before your procedure, so your eyes will be numb. The vast majority of our patients report that the procedure was much easier than they expected, and that they only felt a sensation of pressure for a few moments.

Fear #3: I could mess the procedure up if I blink my eyes.

It is not possible for you to “mess up” your vision correction surgery by blinking. Once your eyes have been fully numbed, your natural urge to blink diminishes. We will also apply a special device that will hold your eyelids open, so blinking will never be an issue you need to worry about.

Fear #4: I don’t like the idea of being awake during eye surgery.

It is natural to feel anxious at the thought of being awake during eye surgery. However, vision correction surgery takes between approximately 20 to 30 minutes per procedure, and your eyes will be fully numb for the duration of your procedure. You should feel no pain and will not need to be concerned about not blinking or not moving your eyes, and being awake will allow you to interact with your surgeon, if needed. If you still feel nervous about being awake during your procedure, please let us know: we can give you an oral sedative to help you stay calm and relaxed.

Fear #5: I could go blind after vision correction surgery.

Having concerns about the safety of refractive surgery is normal. While all surgical procedures involve some risk, the US FDA has reviewed the data related to the devices and procedures used for refractive surgery and determined they are reasonably safe and effective.[3],[4] In fact, the risk of losing vision due to a complication of refractive surgery is less than 1%.[5]

Contact Barnet Dulaney Perkins Eye Center

If you have a fear of eye surgery that is preventing you from pursuing a vision correction procedure, the best thing you can do is be honest about your apprehensions with us. We have guided countless patients through eye surgery, and will take extra care to make sure that you fully understand what you can expect and that you feel calm and comfortable during every step of your procedure. For more information on vision correction surgery, we invite you to contact us today. A friendly member of our team will be happy to help you schedule a consultation with a highly experienced eye doctor so that you can learn more about our practice and the options available to you.

Important Safety Information

The Visian ICL and EVO Visian ICL lens is intended to correct/reduce nearsightedness between -3.0 up to -20.0 D and treat astigmatism from 1.0 D to 4.0 D. If you have nearsightedness within these ranges, Visian ICL and EVO Visian ICL surgery may improve your distance vision without eyeglasses or contact lenses. Because the Visian ICL and EVO Visian ICL corrects for distance vision, it does not eliminate the need for reading glasses, you may require them at some point, even if you have never worn them before. Since implantation of the Visian ICL and EVO Visian ICL is a surgical procedure, before considering Visian ICL and EVO Visian ICL surgery you should have a complete eye examination and talk with your eye care professional about Visian ICL and EVO Visian ICL surgery, especially the potential benefits, risks, and complications. You should discuss the time needed for healing after surgery. Complications, although rare, may include need for additional surgical procedures, inflammation, loss of cells from the back surface of the cornea, increase in eye pressure, and cataracts. You should NOT have Visian ICL and EVO Visian ICL surgery if your doctor determines that 1) the shape of your eye is not appropriate, 2) you do not meet the minimum endothelial cell density for your age at the time of implantation, or 3) your vision is not stable; or if you are pregnant or nursing.

For additional information with potential benefits, risks and complications please visit DiscoverICL.com 

[1] American Academy of Ophthalmology. Eye Health Statistics. Available: https://www.aao.org/newsroom/eye-health-statistics. Accessed March 8, 2021.

[2] Packer M. The Implantable Collamer Lens with a central port: review of the literature. Clinical Ophthalmology. 2018: 12: 2427–2438

[3] American Refractive Surgery Council. Is PRK Safe? Available: https://americanrefractivesurgerycouncil.org/refractive-surgery-procedures/prk/is-prk-safe/. Accessed April 6, 2021.

[4] Staar Surgical. Visian ICL Safety Information. Available: https://us.discovericl.com/safety-information. Accessed April 6, 2021.

[5] American Refractive Surgery Council. Is LASIK Safe? What You Need to Know. April 21, 2016. Available at: https://americanrefractivesurgerycouncil.org/lasik-safe-need-know/. Accessed March 9, 2021.