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Vision Correction Surgery (cont.)

What happens after the vision correction surgical procedure?

As with any surgery, expect some discomfort following laser refractive surgery.

  • Immediately following the procedure, antibiotic drops and steroid drops will be placed into your eyes. The flap will be checked under magnification in the office to be sure it is smooth and wrinkle-free with no debris under it. Finally, protective eyewear, such as goggles or shields, will be placed on your eyes to protect them. With the goggles in place, you will be less likely to rub your eyes, which may cause dislocation of the flap.
  • The hours following the procedure can be more uncomfortable than the procedure itself.
    • Immediately after surgery, you may experience just a small amount of scratchiness of your eyes or you may be very uncomfortable due to tearing and burning. In general, your eyes will be scratchy and light sensitive to varying degrees. They may be teary, have a burning sensation, and feel extremely irritated. These symptoms usually go away in about six hours. In some instances, a corneal abrasion may occur when the flap is created. A corneal abrasion will make your eye very uncomfortable, to the point that it may be difficult to open your eye.
    • Your surgeon may encourage you to take a nap after the procedure. Taking a nap will help you through the most uncomfortable part of the healing with minimal discomfort.
    • Immediately after the surgery, most people will notice an improvement in their uncorrected visual acuity. The vision may appear rather smoky, as if you are looking through a smoke-filled room. The vision will stabilize in about one week or up to three months following surgery.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/22/2016

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