Can Laser Eye Surgery Blind You?

Laser eye surgery is an extremely common procedure with around 100,000 people in the UK each year deciding to have it done.
As with all surgical procedures, there are potential risks and you should make sure you fully research these prior to undergoing the treatment.
The most important thing when it comes to a safe and successful laser eye surgery procedure is choosing a competent and experienced surgeon who has the knowledge and skill to rectify any complications should they occur.
People often want to know what the worst-case scenario is and this includes knowing what the chances are of going blind following laser eye surgery.
The complication rate of laser eye surgery is only about 1 in 1000 treatments (0.1%) and in most of these instances, the surgeon will be able to successfully treat the problem without the loss of any vision.
Only about 1 in 30,000 of these complications cannot be rectified by the surgeon which is an incredibly small number. This complication rate will vary slightly between different surgeons and it is worth checking with your surgeon what their audited complication rate currently stands at.
As to whether or not laser eye surgery can blind you, well theoretically the answer to this is yes but the chances are estimated to be less than 1 in 5 million procedures. To date, there have been no reported cases of laser eye surgery causing blindness and this is even taking into account the very first laser eye surgery procedures which were carried out over 20 years ago today.
Laser eye surgery risks are slightly higher for Lasik compared with Lasek so this may be something to consider. Spending more money on your surgery will not necessarily ensure that the procedure is safer, although it is generally agreed that Intralase is the safest type of Lasik surgery.
In summary, whilst there are risks associated with laser eye surgery the chances of something serious going wrong during the procedure is extremely low. The fear of going blind should not be a reason to put you off having the surgery owing to the fact that there have been no reported incidences to date.

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