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Sunday, March 9, 2014
Eye and Vision Care
LASIK surgery regression
I had Lasik surgery 6 years ago to correct nearsightedness. Over the past 2 years, I`ve noticed that objects in the distance are difficult to see to the point that I`m wearing contact lenses (-2.00). I`ve seen an optometrist several times, and he can`t find anything unhealthy with my eyes. I wear reading glasses to offset the contacts while working at the computer for my job. I`m 53, and worried because my vision continues to regress. What could could cause this, and will it continue?
Returning myopia (nearsightedness) following LASIK is not uncommon. There are a number of possible explanations:
You should continue to see your optometrist on a regular basis. Even though you have some myopia, you can probably function reasonably well with your contact lenses. Some would say that you have the ideal prescription for a 50-year-old, i.e., you can read without glasses and contact lenses!
- As you suspect, the myopia may be post-LASIK regression. Your cornea may be steepening slightly. This is not uncommon and is nothing to worry about, just inconvenient.
- The myopia may be unrelated to the LASIK but due to other age-related changes in your eye. Again, no cause for concern.
- There is a very, very small chance that you are developing corneal ectasia. Given that you seem to see well with your contact lenses this is unlikely. Here the corneal steepening is progressive and the cornea may become distorted. See: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15220728?dopt=Abstract. Your optometrist will be able to keep a close watch on you. As I said, this is unlikely given your history.
Mark Bullimore, MCOptom, PhD
College of Optometry
The Ohio State University