The Eye Institute has been performing LASIK for over two decades and is the only clinic to offer iLASIK in our region.
What Are The Benefits of iLASIK Vision Correction? There are many benefits to this laser eye surgery, including:
- Significant improvements to vision: The latest research reports 90 % of iLASIK patients achieve 20/20 vision or better, while 99% of patients achieve 20/40 vision or better. In addition, LASIK has an unprecedented 96 percent patient satisfaction rate – the highest of any elective procedure.2
- Short recovery time: most patients can return to their daily schedule 24 hours after surgery.
- More affordable: the cost of laser eye surgery has shown to pay for itself and save you money when compared to the cost of glasses and contact lenses.
- Quick Results: while you are not allowed to drive right after your surgery and have to take some special precautions, most patients report improvements to their vision by the following morning.
What Is iLASIK?
View or Download our new Laser Vision Correction Guide
iLASIK, or Laser-Assisted Stromal In-situ Keratomileusis, is an outpatient procedure that utilizes a cool ultraviolet light to precisely reshape the cornea to correct vision problems such as nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism – all known as refractive errors. This procedure has become so popular that it is the number one elective procedure in the U.S.A, bringing clear vision to more than 10 million people in this country alone.
What Can I Expect on Surgery Day?
The iLASIK eye surgery day consists of the following:
- You will check-in, sign forms, pay and any additional testing will be performed at this time.
- We offer fresh baked cookies and a massage chair while you await your surgery time.
- You will meet and have the chance to talk to your surgeon before surgery.
- Patients are awake during this procedure, so the first step is to get you comfortable and gently anesthetize your eyes with drops.
- Your surgeon will then create the thin protective flap. At this point, your vision should dim or become blurrier.
- Once this is completed, the laser will be applied. The laser is controlled by a computer, and an eye-tracking device ensures the highest degree of accuracy – even if your eye moves. As it works, you will hear a clicking sound. This part is over very quickly and should be completely painless.
- The surgeon will then replace the protective flap and apply drops. Your eyes will be checked again once you sit up.
Your eyes may feel slightly irritated and itchy for 4-6 hours after surgery, but this should be gone in 24 hours.
Does iLASIK hurt?
Most patients report that iLASIK is not painful. However, everyone has a different threshold for discomfort so your experience may be different. You can expect a feeling of pressure on the eye during the corneal flap step. The numbing eye drops we place into your eyes prior to your procedure can help minimize discomfort and pain. The first 4-6 hours after surgery your eyes may feel gritty or like you have an eyelash in your eye. As your eyes heal you may also feel slight discomfort; medicated eye drops or over-the-counter pain medications may provide you with relief.
When Will I Be Able to Return To Normal Activity After My Treatment?
In many cases, patients report that they feel fine enough to return to their daily schedules in just a few hours! However, you will not be able to drive right after surgery and doctors recommend that you rest for 24 to 48 hours to give your eyes enough time to heal properly, especially if you work in an environment that can be stressful on your eyes.
Will I Still Need My Glasses?
It is unlikely that you will need glasses after iLASIK. The typical person age 18 to 40 will not need prescription glasses at all. After age 40, the natural lens typically start to lose flexibility, causing the need for reading glasses to see up close. This condition is called presbyopia and it eventually happens to all people. If you are considering iLASIK and hope to avoid reading glasses, ask about a procedure called monovision or Kamra.
What Is The Cost?
Around $2000 per eye. We have different post-operative care packages available and a dry eye combined with iLASIK package. At your free evaluation, we will give you detailed pricing information, so you can choose what fits your needs the best. Financing is available through CareCredit, and monthly payments can be as low as $75 per eye a month.
What are the risks of iLASIK?
Millions of Americans have had LASIK/iLASIK vision correction. Like any surgery, there are risks to iLASIK including:
- Vision problems such as halos, glare and starbursts
- Dry eye
- Flap complications
- Under or over-correction
- Eye infection
- Vision loss (very rare)
Less then 1% of LASIK patients experience these surgical complications.1 Some ophthalmologists believe the long-term risk of wearing contact lenses can actually exceed the one-time risk of iLASIK. The FDA has stated that wearing contacts can put you at risk of serious eye problems including eye infections and corneal ulcers.
Alternatives to iLASIK
- Not all patients are good candidates for iLASIK due to thin corneas or other conditions. The Eye Institute offers the following procedures as an alternative:
- Monovision LASIK
- Intacs® corneal implants
- Visian ICL
Is all LASIK the same?
No. Different surgeons use different technologies. You should demand all-laser or blade-free iLASIK for your eyes. LASIK discount centers may offer outdated technology and less experienced surgeons. Don’t let price dictate which LASIK center you choose. Trust your eyesight to an experienced doctor using advanced technologies.
What’s Next? Get An Eye Exam!
If you are interested in finding out if you are a candidate for iLASIK corrective surgery, then it’s best to have a free evaluation by our laser vision specialists. During this appointment, Dr. Schirber will be able to fully evaluate you for the procedure, and answer any questions you may have about laser eye surgery. Dr. Schirber and other members of our staff have had LASIK and are happy to share their experiences with you.
The Eye Institute is the region’s only provider of iLASIK to the Rapid City community. See the many reasons to select the Eye Institute for iLASIK or PRK surgery:
- Extended Enhancement Vision Plan – Black Hills Regional Eye Institute offers an extended enhancement policy, where other clinics only offer 18 or 24 month plans
- Laser Center Staff and Family Focused Care – The Eye Institute has a dedicated clinic solely for refractive surgery. Immediately after meeting with us, you will understand why most patients feel “like one of the family”.
- Direct-to-Doctor Contact – The decision on whether to have eye surgery is one of the most important choices you will ever make, because of this, you will be given direct cell phone access to our team of doctors. This way, we are just a phone call away.
- Safety First Approach – We pride ourselves on offering the best surgery for you and your eyes, whether it’s advanced surface treatment, ICL technology, refractive cataract surgery, or iLASIK. Not all clinics offer or perform all surgeries; some may perform a less optimum procedure because they don’t offer all options.
- Co-management With Your Local Doctor – We work with and offer education to all the optometrists in the region (Wyoming, Montana, North and South Dakota, and Nebraska) to facilitate your care – making it easier for you to have the procedure, with less travel expense.
- Refractive Focused Exam – The Eye Institute utilizes industry standards and focuses on the details of your eyes to get the best correction. Colvard Pupilometry, Pentacam corneal analysis, Cyclopentolate Dilated eye exams, Wavescan Wavefront analysis and Tear Film Analysis are all givens to measure your eyes before surgery.
- Excellent Financing – The Eye Institute makes the investment affordable for every budget by offering convenient payment options and cash discounts.
- Eye Institute Stability and Leadership – The Eye Institute has been the leading provider of eye care for the Black Hills region since 1983. You can trust we’ll be here for years to come.
First Thoughts After iLASIK
“Being able to see without glasses for the first time in 15 years is easily one of the happiest moments I’ve experienced.” Adam D “Very enjoyable once the scratchiness cleared. I loved waking up and not needing glasses to see. I have worn glasses since first grade. I am very happy with my decision.”
“Would recommend this to everyone. I had very little discomfort. It was awesome. Thanks for everything.”
“I feel like a ROCKSTAR! Surprised I can see so well so soon.”
“What an experience! Thank you to EVERYONE at BHREI for being so friendly and helpful. My nerves were really kept at bay. Very professional staff, can’t thank you enough!”
Solomon, Kerry. “Lasik Complications.” Dr Kerry Solomon LASIK Complication Rates Get the Facts Comments, 5 Oct. 2017
Dupps, William. “What Is the LASIK Success Rate?” American Refractive Surgery Council, 23 Oct. 2017