Lasik Surgery vs. Refractive Lens Exchange: Which One is Right for Me? | Clarity Laser Vision
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Lasik Surgery vs. Refractive Lens Exchange: Which One is Right for Me?

April 22, 2021

LASIK surgery has been the most popular choice for permanent vision correction for a long time now. However, LASIK is not the only option available for permanent corrective eye procedures. Another lesser-known option is Refractive Lens Exchange. So, how do you know which option is best? Is one better than the other? Read more to learn about how these procedures work and the differences between them.

 What is Refractive Lens Exchange?

Refractive Lens Exchange (RLE) is a procedure where the natural lens of your eye is removed, and a new intraocular lens (IOL) is used as a replacement. The IOL contains refractive power that alters the way that you see. RLE corrects conditions such as myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism, and presbyopia.

Refractive Lens Exchange is akin to cataract surgery and is considered effective and safe. It also means that you will not require cataract surgery later in life as your natural lens will be gone.

Both RLE and LASIK deliver similar results with easy recovery periods, but each procedure uses very different methods to yield results.

 What is LASIK?

LASIK is a surgical treatment that corrects visions by reshaping the cornea using a precise laser beam. LASIK works to correct conditions such as myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism by permanently reshaping your eye’s surface. Doing this allows for the cornea to bend and focus light onto the retina properly.

Which Procedure is Better?

 When it comes to whether it is better to seek LASIK or Refractive Lens Exchange near you, the answer is dependent on the individual! Both of these corrective eye procedures are very effective, safe, and straight-forward. However, one procedure may be better than the other for your needs. Factors that can help you decide which procedure to go forward with include your overall health, eye health, and vision needs.

LASIK surgery may be the better option if you have healthy eyes and can undergo cornea surgery. LASIK is a brief, painless, and very effective corrective eye procedure. Refractive Lens Exchange is much more invasive than LASIK because it enters inside the eye. Because of this, if LASIK is a viable option for you, your eye doctor in Calgary may not even consider Refractive Lens Exchange. LASIK is also most often used on individuals under the age of 40.

If you are not a candidate for LASIK, you may be referred to an eye surgeon near you for Refractive Lens Exchange. RLE is especially great for individuals who have unstable corneas that would not tolerate a change in shape or individuals over the age of 40 who are at greater risk of developing cataracts. RLE can also correct higher levels of hyperopia and myopia that cannot be corrected through LASIK. RLE offers stable, clear vision with a low risk of regression, meaning you will be less likely to need reading glasses later in life.

The only way to truly know if LASIK or Refractive Lens Exchange is better for you is to visit your eye doctor for a consultation about corrective eye procedures. Your eye doctor can provide you with a comprehensive eye assessment to learn about your eye health and structure. From there, they can guide you on the best form of corrective eye surgery for your specific needs.

At Clarity Laser Vision, we offer both LASIK and Refractive Lens Exchange in Calgary. Please contact us to book a consultation today.