Can You Have LASIK Twice?

Is there a risk of losing vision to the point of needing another Lasik surgery down the road?

Doctor Answers 14

Repeat LASIK

IF your distance vision has began to become blurry, a second procedure may be possible. This is routinely done if the patients cornea is healthy and there is enough tissue left (we remove a very small amount of tissue every time we do LASIK). The surgeon may also choose to do a different type of refractive procedure for your enhancement. This will depend on the status of your cornea and technology available to the surgeon.

If your distance vision is still fine but your near has began to blur, this is not correctable with a second procedure. All patients with LASIK will inevitably loose their near clarity as the age beyond 40 years old. This is a natural aging process and LASIK will not help the near vision, only reading glasses. Your distance vision should remain stable as you age.

Austin Ophthalmologist

Repeat LASIK is sometimes possible even years later

There is no certain answer to this and it depends on your particular case. If the eye is well healed, there is adequate tissue left, and there is a significant benefit in doing more surgery, then a repeat LASIK may be performed. Our experience is in lifting flaps for retreatments this many years out there is a higher chance of complications such as epithelial ingrowth and you need to discuss this with your doctor. Sometimes a surface or PRK treatment can be performed, but this is definitely off label and not an FDA approved treatment (nor is any repeat laser treatement FDA approved).

Some patients only have very minor changes in their vision, and a repeat surgery is not always in their best interest. It is up to you and your doctor to evealuate your case individually and make that determination.

Jon Dishler, MD, FACS
Greenwood Village Ophthalmologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

LASIK Enhancement

Most people that have LASIK are able to have a second or enhancement procedure.  For at least the first year, assuming that there is a safe amount of cornea left, that would involve lifting the flap.  If an enhancement is needed further out, the treatment may be safer with surface ablation. 

Mark Golden, MD
Chicago Ophthalmologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Re-treatment for LASIK

The short answer is yes, it is very likely you could undergo a re-treatment or enhancement procedure. You must, however, be carefully screened by your surgeon to ensure that there is enough remaining corneal thickness to safely correct your residual nearsightedness or farsightedness. Whether it is your first or second surgery, in order to decrease the chance of needing a re-treatment, you and your surgeon should be sure that your prescription has remained stable for at least a year or even longer. My re-treatment rate is exceedingly low because I always make sure the prescription has remained stable for at least a year and even longer in younger patients.

Christopher Starr, MD
New York Ophthalmologist

LASIK Touchups

It is possible to have your laser procedure touched up(we call this an enhancement) years later if necessary. Although the results of your initial LASIK procedure will be permanent, there is a chance that your vision can change a slight bit, or that laser technology might allow us to do other things with your vision later on. If this is a possibility you would need to have a full examination again to be sure your cornea is thick enough and all of the other parameters are suitable, but then the touchup would be safe and appropriate.

Anthony J. Kameen, MD
Baltimore Ophthalmologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Can You Have LASIK Twice?

A second procedure is potentially possible as long as the patient meets the medical requirements needed by the doctor. For example enough prescription and enough cornea thickness.

William Ellis, MD, FACS
San Francisco Ophthalmologist

Second LASIK Treatment

If the results of your eye exam, including a corneal topography, show that your eyes and cornea are fine to receive a touch-up, then yes, you can have a second LASIK treatment.

Arturo Chayet, MD
Mexico Ophthalmologist

Can you have Lassik twice?

A small number of patients may encounter some change in uncorrected acuity over time. In most instances loss of some of the effect of an original LASIK procedure can occur over time as we age. Resulting changes in your eyes can necessitate a LASIK refinement procedure. Each patient requiring such a refinement will require a thorough evaluation to assess candidacy. If you are approved for a revision procedure your surgeon will discuss two options: lifting the original LASIK flap or doing a surface treatment instead. Your clinical status
will determine which option is best for you.

Martin L. Fox, MD
New York Ophthalmologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

A second Lasik

Yes, A second surgery is called an enhancement and can frequently be performed. When the enhancement is performed that long after the initial surgery often a PRK (Photorefractive Keratectomy) is performed because of some additional risks when lifting the original flap. This involves treating the ocular surface rather than lifting the corneal flap

Brian Davis, MD
Salt Lake City Ophthalmologist

Additional LASIK Procedure

LASIK surgery is safe and effective. During the procedure small amounts of tissue are removed from the cornea to change the shape of the eye. From the 20 year LASIK experience we know that the results are very stable, but sometimes refractive changes do occur over time, leading patients and doctors to consider an enhancement procedure. Whether it is appropriate to proceed with an additional treatment depends on a number of factors:

  1. Find out what is the reason for the change in vision? Is it just a slow drift in prescription or is there something else like a cataract that is now affecting the vision?
  2. What is the prescription? Is it amenable to correction with the laser? Is it significant enough to warrant the enhancement?
  3. How much cornea is remaining? Is there enough room for treatment to safely proceed with the enhancement?
  4. What is the corneal architecture and is it safe to proceed with another treatment?
  5. How will the treatment affect the need for reading glasses (presbyopia)?
  6. Are there any other factors that could influence the outcome of the procedure, such as newly diagnosed diabetes, or glaucoma?

To summarize, LASIK enhancements are safe and effective and there is usually no time or age limit. A consultation with an experienced refractive surgeon with access to modern diagnostic technology like Pentacam and treatment technology like the latest EXCIMER lasers like Allegretto EYEQ 400, is the best way to find out if it’s indicated. 

Arthur Benjamin, MD
West Hollywood Ophthalmologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

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.