Are you tired of squinting through glasses or fumbling with contact lenses? LASIK may be the answer you're looking for.
Using advanced technology and minimally invasive techniques, this surgery has revolutionized how people think about correcting vision. But is it worth the hype?
This article covers the latest research and LASIK statistics. We will explore its safety, effectiveness, usage rates, and more to help you make an informed decision.
- LASIK surgery boasts a success rate of at least 96%. And, in some cases, that number jumps to an impressive 98%.
- About 20 to 25 million pairs of eyes have undergone the magic of LASIK treatment since its inception in 1989.
- This elective surgical procedure boasts a remarkable complication rate of less than 1%.
- Today's LASIK surgery cost decreased so that you can get the same procedure for around $4,400. That marks a 20% reduction from 2008’s $4,000, which is $5,300 in today’s money if you factor in inflation.
LASIK Surgery Success Rate in 2023
LASIK surgery boasts a success rate of at least 96%. And, in some cases, that number jumps to an impressive 98%.1
Short for Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis, this surgery boosts 50% of people's eyesight beyond 20/20. No wonder 96% of people who receive refractive surgery go with it.
After all, LASIK's benefits are immense. From its precision, quick recovery time, and <1% complication risks, it has become the go-to procedure for vision correction.
How Many People Have Gotten LASIK?
About 20 to 25 million pairs of eyes have undergone the magic of LASIK treatment since its inception in 1989. In the U.S., the figure is over 16 million.2
But despite the clear benefits, fewer patients are opting for LASIK. Factors such as cost and fear of surgery prevent more people from experiencing the joys of perfect vision. Thus, less than 800,000 of these procedures are performed annually today compared to 1.4 million years back.
However, there's reason to be optimistic. With successful word-of-mouth referrals and increasing positive social media chatter, more patients may overcome their reservations and opt for this treatment.
When Was LASIK Invented?
There is no single inventor to give entire credit to for LASIK. Over 30 years ago, the technology was first developed with contributions from various ophthalmologists and medical doctors.
The First Innovations
The first technique for laser vision correction was perfected in 1963. Dr. José Barraquer created the keratomileusis, a surgical reshaping of the cornea. It was proven safe and effective for 40+ years without causing any scarring — except for minor technical hiccups.
Dr. Luis Ruiz then transformed the hand-held microkeratome instrument into a motorized keratome. This invention allowed surgeons to work with corneal tissue layers of perfectly even thickness, resulting in consistently outstanding outcomes.
Then, the automated lamellar keratoplasty (ALK) technique took things up a notch. ALK's ability to precisely cut using the same keratome became a promising breakthrough in treating myopia.
The results, however, were only occasionally reliable.
Fast forward to 1983, and the Excimer laser treatment emerged. It was used to vaporize small layers of corneal tissue before Dr. Ioannis Pallikaris started using it on patients with myopia.
Over time, advancements in the technique and the introduction of nomograms have led to predictably stunning results. And years later, Dr. Gholam Peyman introduced the laser in-situ keratomileusis, known as LASIK.
Peyman’s dedication bore sweet fruits in the form of a patent in 1989, paving the way for millions to enjoy a better vision.
How Has LASIK Improved?
LASIK technology has evolved with the times. From its early days as a manual procedure to today's state-of-the-art bladeless treatment, it is now more precise and patient-friendly.
The clearest examples of progress are the automated microkeratomes. These machines have made the procedure safer, more accurate, and less time-consuming.
Additionally, the advancements in excimer lasers have allowed doctors to map the unique features of each eye and tailor the procedure accordingly. This makes treatments more suited for individual patients, resulting in a higher success rate.
Thanks to these technologies, the success rates of laser eye surgery now hover around 96%. Moreover, the risk of complications has been minimized to less than 1%.
The wavefront-guided laser treatment has also become the gold standard. LASIK surgeons use this sophisticated, computerized technology to measure the eye's aberrations accurately. Thus, vision outcomes are even more precise and successful than ever before.
Other LASIK Statistics
- The Lasik Eye Surgery Market is set to skyrocket between 2023 to 2030 with a projected compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.7%.1
- This elective surgical procedure boasts a remarkable complication rate of less than 1%.1
- Transforming lives with near-perfect outcomes, LASIK treatment has patients singing its praises at a staggering 96% satisfaction rate.1
- With this surgery, you have a 99% chance of achieving 20/40 vision or better and a 90% probability of reaching 20/20 vision.1
- Over 9 million U.S. people have had LASIK surgery as of June 2018. Another 718,000 underwent the procedure in 2020.1
Back in 2008, getting LASIK eye surgery cost roughly $4,000. But with inflation factored in, it would now cost closer to $5,300. However, today's price has decreased so you can get the same procedure for around $4,400. That marks a 20 percent reduction in price. Meanwhile, the average hourly wage has increased to over $30, so you no longer need to put in 186 hours of work like before. It now just takes 146 hours, which is a 20% decrease in work time.4
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