LASIK professionals in southern-central US
September 5, 2005 8:36 PM   Subscribe

Need some advice regarding LASIK in the southern-central US region. (Oklahoma and surrounding states)

I've finally decided that I really want to get LASIK surgery done. I've read other AskMe posts on this, regarding whether it's a good idea, as well as plenty of other resources. I'm pretty well set in my desire to do this. I've heard the horror stories, and the benefits simply outweigh the risks.

However, I'm wary about doctors and procedures. I'd rather do one eye at a time, on the chance that something could go wrong. Naturally, I'd like a surgeon here in Oklahoma, or a bordering state. I'd like any advice regarding good experiences, good surgeons, or surgeons to avoid.

Also to note, I've seen the IntraLase and wavefront/customvue technologies, and heard no extra risks involved with these. Anyone have advice regarding these particular points of LASIK?
posted by Saydur to Health & Fitness (3 answers total)
Best answer: Disclosure: IntraLase is a client of mine, so I've seen all the facts and figures. IntraLase is definitely preferred by surgeons over a microkeratome (blade). A very high percentage of practices worldwide would be using IntraLase already, but the cost of the device can be prohibitive for a practice, especially when they've had historical success with a microkeratome. Most schools are using IntraLase devices now, so over time it will become the default method in use.

A large part of the risk of LASIK is during the first step when they cut the flap on your eye (which is then peeled pack for the laser to ablate your eye during the second and final step.)

Since the microkeratome is a hand-held mechanical blade, it is subject to human error and doesn't offer much control or any customization. Of course, most procedures up til now have been performed with a blade and they are almost always safe, but when problems do occur, it's usually during this step (things like "button-holes", etc.)

IntraLase uses a silent and painless femtosecond laser to create the flap on your eye. There is no blade involved at all. The technology is actually pretty fascinating -- pre-programmed for your particular eye, it creates thousands of stacks of tiny bubbles in your eye, then creates a "hinge" where the doctor wants it, and finally the flap is peeled back. The somewhat serrated and edged flap also creates a "puzzle-piece" like effect that lets the flap find its original positioning and promotes faster healing.

The other nice thing about IntraLase is that if something does go wrong (act of God, etc.) the bubbles it creates are harmless and disappear in 30 minutes, and you can still have the procedure the same day. Not so with a blade-cut flap.

So, from what I know (I also worked with VISX on CustomVue), the IntraLase/CustomVue combo is definitely the safest and most advanced way to go, but of course are more expensive... but then again, they are your EYES :)
posted by robbie01 at 10:01 PM on September 5, 2005 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Well, thank you for the information regarding the IntraLase system. It's a bit reassuring to hear the process involved, and I'm definitely not afraid to empty my wallet for this surgery.

Still wouldn't mind anyone with advice on good surgeons in the general area though.
posted by Saydur at 11:29 AM on September 6, 2005

It may be further than you want, but I had good results with Dr. Steven Coleman in Albuquerque. I did both eyes at once, with no problems. A friend did both eyes, and went back for a slight tweak on one. And two other friends did the one eye nearsighted, one eye farsighted (to replace bifocals I suppose) with no problems.
posted by korej at 5:17 PM on September 7, 2005

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