Laser Eye Surgery Suitability
Answer a few simple questions about your prescription and lifestyle to find out if you are suitable for Laser Eye Surgery.
Check your suitability for Laser Eye Surgery by answering the following questions:
- Are you over 18 years old?
- Are your eyes healthy?
- Can you see well with your glasses?
If 'yes' to all of the above then you are 95% likely to be suitable for treatment.
Check Your Prescription
Please fill in your prescription details. Don't worry if many of the boxes are empty. Axis is not required.
Plus and Minus Signs
A minus sign (or dash above a number) means you are short sighted. A plus sign means you are long sighted. CYL means you have astigmatism. Axis is the angle of your astigmatism and is not related to suitability.
If you are unsure of your exact prescription please use the table below to see the type of surgery that could be suitable for you:
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√ Treatable Prescriptions - ? Please come in for a consultation to determine your suitability.
*We treat long sighted patients over the age of 35 years.
If your reading glasses prescription is +1, +1.5, or +2, you may be suitable for Monovision Laser Eye Surgery.
We do not recommend Laser Eye Surgery for long-sighted patients under the age of 35 as, due to age-related eye changes. We cannot guarantee satisfactory long-term results. However, if you’re not found suitable due to a high prescription, being long-sighted or having thin corneas, you are more likely to be eligible for Lens Surgery. We have multiple lens treatment options available, which you can read about here.
The following medical conditions may preclude you from treatment (which can only be confirmed on consultation):
- Blepharitis (eye infections) - your eyes need to be clear of infection
- Increased internal eye pressure - eye pressure needs to be under control
- Dry eyes, Epilepsy, MS - depending on the status of the condition
- Diabetes - OK if well controlled with healthy retinas
- Very large pupils with high correction
- Your prescription is low (under 0.75) and you do not have astigmatism
- If you are pregnant or breast feeding please wait three months after weaning before coming in for a consultation.
You are probably not suitable if you suffer from:
- Rheumatoid Arthritis, SLE, Lupus
- Macular degeneration
- Crohn's or collagen disease
- Optic nerve damage
- Blindness in one eye or partial sightedness
- Herpes of the eye
- Corneal dystrophy
- A squint or prism which is not corrected by contact lenses
As results are not guaranteed, we cannot treat people who have great difficulty in finding glasses to correct their eyesight, nor those with an obsessive nature or those who suffer from acute depression.
Understanding Your Prescription
A glasses or lenses prescription is usually shown as a series of numbers in boxes. For Example:
OD (oculus dextrum) indicates that the readings are for your right eye. OS (oculus sinistrum) refers to your left eye.
The SPH (Sphere) box shows a measurement of how long sighted (hyperopic) or short sighted (myopic) you are.
If you are short sighted, the SPH value will have a minus (-) sign before it.
If you are long sighted, the SPH value will have a plus (+) sign before it.
The (D) stands for dioptres which is the standard measurement that is used. If the SPH value is between 0 and 3.0D then you have a mild prescription. 3.0 to 6.0D is moderate and 6.0D and above is a high prescription.
The CYL (Cylinder) box shows the strength of any astigmatism. An eye with astigmatism will not be perfectly spherical and will be like a rugby ball in shape. Astigmatism can be plus (+) or minus (-) and is also measured in dioptres.
The AXIS box shows the orientation of the cylinder (from 0-180 degrees). At Optimax we add the Sphere and Cylinder together and use this figure to determine suitability for treatment. For example a prescription of -3.00 Sph and -1.50 Cyl becomes -4.50.
Some prescriptions also have extra information such as "VA", "Rdg add" and "Near VA".
"VA" stands for visual acuity. This indicates the standard of vision (for each eye) when corrected and is often presented as a fraction. This is where the term "20/20 vision" comes from, which means a person can see detail from 20 feet away the same as a person with normal eyesight would see from 20 feet. If you had 20/40 vision you could see detail from 20 feet away the same as a person with normal eyesight would see it from 40 feet away. VA can also be converted to a decimal so that 20/20 is 1.0 and 20/40 is 0.5. VA is usually measured by a Snellen chart which shows different letters that get smaller as you read down the chart. The further down the chart you can read, the better your visual acuity.
"Rdg add" (reading addition) shows the additional positive power that is needed to enable the eyes to focus for close work. This is usually only needed for patients over 40-45, since focusing ability declines as we get older (presbyopia). If a reading addition is stated, this means you need different spectacle prescriptions for reading and for distance.
"Near VA" represents the smallest sized print that can be read with the prescription. This is usually written as Nx where x is a number representing the print size. N5 is the smallest sized type that you will normally find and N8 is approximately the size of normal newsprint.
Not Suitable for Laser Eye Surgery?
Severe short/long sight and astigmatism is now treatable at Optimax.
For the majority of patients Laser Eye Surgery is appropriate, however there are many different conditions, which the laser cannot treat.
If your prescription falls outside the treatment range for LASIK or LASEK laser eye surgery, then Implantable Contact Lenses(ICL) or Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) are an option available to you.
These are implantable lenses that are used for correcting very high prescriptions of short-sight, long-sight and astigmatism.
They are similar to a very small contact lens which is placed inside the eye instead of sitting on the eye's surface. For maximum safety, the lenses are implanted in one eye at a time, allowing about a week for the first eye to recover.