Little Aston Hospital: 0121 580 7171
South Bank Hospital: 01905 362 033

LASEK laser eye surgery

Common side effects | Prices | FAQs

Most people’s glasses prescription can be easily corrected using laser refractive surgery to provide good unaided distance vision. This is achieved by changing the shape of the cornea using an excimer laser to either make it flatter if you are short-sighted or steeper if you are long-sighted. The amount of change in shape needed is tiny, often less than 50 microns. Laser refractive surgery has been performed since the mid 1990’s and is one of the most common ophthalmic procedures in the UK.

About LASEK

This laser treatment is applied to the surface of the cornea and involves a longer recovery time than LASIK. To help alleviate discomfort, a bandage contact lens is inserted for the first five days after surgery. Once the skin layer has healed and the vision starts to improve, you should be able to drive 1 - 2 weeks after surgery.

Although recovery is slower after LASEK, both LASIK and LASEK produce the same good final visual results, with almost all patients able to see as well or better than they did in soft contact lenses prior to their surgery.

What if I am unsuitable for LASEK?

If you are not suitable for either LASEK or LASIK you may be suitable for Clear Lens Exchange. The most appropriate procedure will be discussed with you at your consultation. The most accurate way to confirm your suitability is to book a consultation with our ophthalmic consultant.

A guide to who can have laser surgery

Generally you will be suitable if you:

  • are over the age of 21
  • have healthy eyes
  • have a prescription of less than -7 dioptres of short-sightedness (Myopia) and +4 dioptres of long-sightedness

You might not be suitable if you have:

  • high and/or complex prescriptions
  • a dependency on reading glasses, although there is no upper age limit
  • health related issues such as diabetes, severe dry eyes, glaucoma, rheumatoid arthritis, pregnancy and breast feeding

The most accurate way to confirm your suitability is to book a consultation with our ophthalmic consultant.