What Are Good Lasik Eye Surgery Alternatives?

Doctor Answers 10

LASIK Alternatives

Glasses and contacts work well. Advanced Surface Ablation (ASA) is a form of laser treatment that can be used in place of LASIK for medical reasons or if the cornea is too thin or if other conditions preclude using LASIK. This procedure typically produces the same visual results that LASIK does, and uses the same wavefront guided excimer laser

For patients that may not qualify for LASIK of ASA, refractive lens exchanges can be an option. This is where the surgeon takes out the natural lens and will replace it with a lens that will allow the patient to see well in the distance ( and with some lenses near as well). This option becomes more appropriate for older patients who are approaching the age when cataracts appear.

Austin Ophthalmologist

Alternatives to LASIK

LASIK is a great procedure which is used to treat nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism.

There are people in whom LASIK is not the best procedure due to the thinness of the outlayer of the eye, cornea, occupation or hobbies. For these people, PRK, or photorefractive keratectomy, might be a better alternative.

There are also other procedures, known as implantable collamer lens [ICL, Visian] or phakic intraocular lens [Verisyse], in which a lens is implanted inside the eye to treat highly nearsighted individuals. The results of these lenses are amazing!

Sandy Feldman, MD
San Diego Ophthalmologist
4.5 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Alternatives to LASIK

There are other good options besides LASIK. The options are  dependent upon your particular refractive error (glasses prescription) and other measurements of your particular eyes (shape and corneal thickness to name a few).  While glasses and contacts are the most common, Advanced Surface Ablation (PRK) is the second most common laser vision correction procedure after LASIK.  PRK is frequently performed on those who are deemed not great candidates for LASIK due to too thin of corneas, irregular shape of one's cornea, or dry eyes and also provides excellent results.  There are also other procedures including various lens and corneal implants that require a thorough evaluation of your eyes to determine if that is your optimal option.  It is very important to do your homework and meet with the surgeon to get your questions answered to your satisfaction before proceeding with any procedure.

Jay Bansal, MD
San Francisco Ophthalmologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Mom, do I have to wear glasses?

The nonsurgical alternatives to laser vision correction are the old standbys, glasses and contact lenses. These have the time tested plusses and minuses that we all know. What many people don't realize is that it has been shown quite well that there are more potential risks of infection and harm to the vision when one wears contact lenses than when one has Lasik!

The surgical alternatives to Lasik are PRK (Photorefractive keratectomy) and lens replacement. One of your surgeons jobs is to suggest the safest modality for you which will get you the best visual result. Keep asking questions until you are satisfied you have all of the information. If not, remember, this is an elective procedure and another opinion  is usually a good idea.

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


I stopped cutting LASIK flaps in 2005

Now only do noncutting ASAs or LASEK and epiLASEK

my incidence of better than 20/20 doubled after I went noncutting btw

Emil William Chynn, MD, FACS, MBA
New York Ophthalmologist
4.6 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Glasses and contacts are the main alternatives to LASIK.

It's an obvious answer but glasses and contacts are the main alternatives to LASIK. Orthokeratology doesn't really work well. Lens replacement surgery involves additional risks but it is an option for some patients.

Joseph W. King, MD
Renton Ophthalmologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

LVC alternatives

There are several good laser vision correction alternatives to LASIK. Photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) is the most popular alternative to LASIK. LASEK and Epi-LASIK are other alternatives. Unlike LASIK, PRK, LASEK and Epi-LASIK (cummulatively known as Advanced Surface Ablation or ASA) do not require any cuts or flaps to be made within the cornea. For people who are very highly nearsighted and who are not good candidates for LASIK or ASA, implantable contact lenses or phakic IOL's may be an alternate vision correcting procedure.

Christopher Starr, MD
New York Ophthalmologist

How about PRK?

Certainly, there are glasses and contact lenses. Surgically, I regularly perform PRK on patients who are not good candidates for LASIK or who prefer the slightly improved safety of PRK over LASIK. Whether you're nearsighted, farsighted, or have an astigmatism, PRK may work beautifully for you. If you're very nearsighted, you may consider the Visian ICL. It's an implantable contact lens that is placed behind your cornea and is geared toward patients who are a -6.00D all the way up to a -20.0D! Let me know if you have any other questions.

Paul C. Kang, MD
Washington DC Ophthalmologist

LASIK alternatives medical and surgical

There are nonsurgical alternatives -- glasses and contacts.

There are surgical alternatives- PRK (surface laser treatment) and ICL (lens inside the eye) and in some cases refractive lens exchange (a type of cataract surgery)

You should discuss with your doctor which is the best alternative for you.

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

Alternatives to LASIK

There are surgical and nonsurgical alternatives. Nonsurgical would include glasses, and contact lenses. There are many types of contacts: soft, toric, gas permeable, bifocal.

Surgical alternatives include surface ablation (also known as PRK, LASEK, or epi-LASIK), the ICL (Implantable Collamer Lens), RLE (Refractive Lens Exchange), Intacs, and CK (Conductive Keratoplasty).

Gary Kawesch, MD (retired)
San Jose Ophthalmologist

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.