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What is laser eye surgery?

Laser eye surgery, also known as refractive surgery or laser vision correction, is a procedure which involves reshaping the cornea using a laser.

The cornea is the clear “window” at the front of the eye and is responsible for focussing light that enters your eye.

Why is it done?

Laser eye surgery is generally performed to correct your vision if you see things out of focus, meaning you will be less dependent on glasses or contact lenses.

Laser eye surgery can correct common problems such as:

If you have a strong form of astigmatism, laser eye surgery may not be suitable for you and you may require lens surgery instead.

To be eligible for laser surgery you generally need to be over the age of 18 have a steady prescription (one which has not changed in the last two years). Your lens must be clear and you must have a normal, healthy eye.

What does it involve?

The main types of laser eye surgery are:

All laser eye surgery procedures are quick, taking about 15 minutes to complete.

How do you prepare for laser eye surgery?

Before the procedure it’s important to:


After surgery there is a chance of developing the following complications:

In addition to this, a number of patients may need to go back to the clinic for more surgery. Usually there is no extra charge.

Alternatives to this treatment

If you have a high prescription, you may be more suitable for lens replacement surgery.