please suggest resources that can help me find the best lasik doctor!
Where Can I Find the Best Lasik Eye Center?
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There are plenty of online directories like allaboutvision.com and docshop.com. Some of them allow reviews from patients. I really like yelp.com because the people posting are often very candid about their experiences and can post anonymously. In general, whether it be through friends and family or an online community, you want to hear from other patients.
Take time to ask questions and consider your choices carefully.
How does one find a good LASIK surgeon? There are various associations you can call to find a list of board certified doctors and doctors with the appropriate qualifications in your area. Make sure to expand your search area beyond your immediate surroundings because it is always easier to narrow down your search rather than expand it. Start with The Council for Refractive Surgery Quality Assurance, this web site will provide you with various resources and the ability to locate doctors in your area. The Council for Refractive Surgery Quality Assurance is the only organization in the United States to impartially monitor quality in refractive surgery. It is an independent, non-profit consumer oriented health organization that certifies refractive surgeons who meet CRSQA's standards of quality care. A surgeon seeking certification must submit to close scrutiny. With the acceptance of a surgeon's application, CRSQA verifies the surgeon's credentials and experience. You should also visit the American Board of Ophthalmology for information on certified surgeons in your area. Ask friends and family if they recommend a surgeon based on personal experience.
It's important that you interview possible surgeons to see who suits your preferences, remember where you feel comfortable is where you should go. Ask how long they have been in practice, find out how many patients they have performed refractive surgery on. Training and experience produce better results and fewer complications. Ask the surgeon what his/her credentials are regarding refractive surgery and LASIK in particular. You should always be up front and ask if there's any reasons you wouldn't have excellent results with LASIK. There are a number of possible refractive surgery options now available for patients who were once not a candidate for LASIK; such as LASEK, Epi-LASIK, and refractive lens procedures utilizing the Alcon ReStor multifocal lens or the Visian ICL. Find a LASIK surgeon who is accessible and will be available when you need them, before, during and after the surgery; seek out a surgeon who can effectively communicate with you.
Throughout your research you will notice many advertisements for doctors who perform LASIK, but there are a few things you should always beware of. Make sure your decision is not made based on cost and don't settle for the first eye care center, doctor, or procedure you come across in your investigation. It's important to compare the experience and results of the surgeon and the center, as well as the care you receive rather than cost when doing your research. Remember these decisions you are making are about your eyes and refractive surgery with a well renowned surgeon will be to your benefit for the rest of your life.
The Council for Refractive Surgery Quality Assurance (CRSQA) recommends asking some of these questions, with suggested responses, when considering a LASIK surgeon:
* How long have you been performing refractive surgery? Not less than three years.
* How many procedures have you performed in the last 12 months? Not less than 250.
* What percentage of refractive surgery candidates do you decline? The only wrong answer is "none".
Trusted lasiksurgeons.com is a new website that was developed to help the public separate who claims to be the best and who is actually regarded in the industry as the a leader. The inclusion criteria includes the number of FDA investigative studies, faculty appointments (medical school), research, professional publications and presentations to their peers. If you are lucky enough to have one of these doctors in your area, I would consider a visit.
Often you can look up your surgeon on Google. Truly renowned surgeons are almost always active in the scientific community with publications and research.
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How to find the best LASIK Surgeon
I believe the best way to find a surgeon for any procedure, not just LASIK, is word of mouth. Whether your are referred by your eye doctor, a friend or family member, they will likely not steer you wrong. Optometrists and Ophthalmologists will usually "shoot pretty straight" when you ask their opinion, and they will give you a good referral. Beware of discount centers or those locations that rely on advertising more than good results.
Learning about LASIK on the internet is a double edged sword, like anything else. If you do look for information on the internet, try a site like Trustedlasiksurgeons.com which has a rigorous screening process and controls the qualtiy of the surgeons they post on their site. Relying on just going to an Academic Institution or University has its perils and pitfalls too. While they tend to have great reputations, they also have physician turnover, and in many cases you won't even be given the courtesy of knowing who your surgeon will be. So, do your homework!
Best LASIK centers
The way to find a good doctor for you is by meeting them. There are several important things to ask:
Experience- at least 1000 cases
Who will do your preoperative and postoperative care- this should not be passed off and should be your surgeon
What laser treatment will be used- you want only a Custom Treatment preferably with WaveFront technology
How much does it cost- run if it is cheap. Good laser technology is expensive.
Who will see you if there is a problem- the surgeon should always be the one to care for you.
Seek out an academic center or a teaching hospital
If you are in the New York City vicinity come see us at Weill Cornell Eye Associates. If outside of New York, seek out the closest academic center and/or teaching hospital. Physicians who do research and teach the surgery to other doctors, in my opinion, are often the best doctors.
Stay away from the really inexpensive places which tend to advertise unrealistically low fees, "Buy one eye get the other free" or "$399 LASIK". If the advertisement seems more appropriate for a televison set than your set of eyes then please stay away. Remember the old but true saying, you really do get what you pay for.
Word of mouth and Trusted LASIK Surgeons
The best way to find a good doctor is by word of mouth from other satisfied patients. If you do not have this resource or in addition to it I think that an independent source such as Trusted LASIK Surgeons (at trustedlasiksurgeons.com) is a good option since they are limited to the top 1% of all LASIK surgeons.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.