LASIK (or Laser-Assisted In-Situ Keratomileusis) is one of the most studied and proven procedures for reducing or even eliminating your need for corrective lenses such as glasses and contact lenses. For over 30 years, LASIK has been helping people see more clearly, freeing them from the frustrating moments that may come from corrective lenses.
Dr. Vance Thompson and LASIK surgeons Dr. John Berdahl, Dr. Michael Greenwood, Dr. Russell Swan, and Dr. Brandon Baartman have been world leaders in LASIK technology, optimization, and improvements for years, and we continue to bring our expertise and commitment to excellence to each LASIK procedure we offer at our world-class facility in Sioux Falls, SD. In fact, the most important thing you should consider for your LASIK procedure is the experience of your surgeon and their commitment to using leading LASIK technology for your procedure.
In addition to their precise techniques, training and distinctions - like having the region’s only team of fellowship-trained Corneal and Refractive Surgery doctors - our doctors lead the way in the future of laser and vision correction through extensive research, FDA studies, and technology partnerships with major LASIK technology providers.
The decision to undergo LASIK surgery is one that will impact your life forever. At Vance Thompson Vision, we know how important it is to wake up each morning to clear vision. Because improved eyesight means more than seeing your best, it means being your best.
"I am absolutely amazed with my vision after LASIK surgery at Vance Thompson Vision. Until I no longer had to wear them, I didn't realize how much contact lenses were irritating my eyes and making them feel dry. I had surgery in the late afternoon on a Thursday and was at work at 7am Friday morning with 20/15 vision. I cannot say enough about how wonderful my experience has been. I would recommend Dr. Berdahl and Vance Thompson Vision over and over again, it truly is a world class establishment!"- K.H. / Google / Sep 16, 2017
"I had Lasik in October and am 20/15 in both eyes. Everyone was so nice and the experience was amazing!!"- J.H. / Google / Feb 16, 2017
"It's been less than 1 week since my lasik surgery, and during my checkup today I was informed that I was already seeing 20/15!!!! There are no words to describe how happy and grateful I am for Dr. Thompson and his professional associates. This is by far the best investment I have ever made. My surgery may be paid in full, but I'll forever feel indebted. It's been a great ten years, glasses. But I'm sorry to say, you will not be missed!"- K.A. / Facebook / Jan 27, 2016
"I used to think Disney World was the happiest place on earth....then I hadn't LASIK consultation at Vance Thompson Vison! Seriously, EVERYONE was smiling and treated me like a queen! What a great experience!!"- M.L. / Facebook / Sep 14, 2015
"Everyone I worked with was amazing! I just got lasik and they did such a good job explaining it all."- S.H. / Facebook / Nov 01, 2016
How Vision Works
Your eye is an amazing instrument - when working perfectly, the cornea (or front surface of the eye) is precisely curved to gather and focus light through the lens and onto the retina (located at the back of the eye.) When the light is precisely focused, your eye creates a crisp and clear image for your brain.
For some people, the “curve” of the cornea may be a little too curved or too flat. When this happens, light and images are not perfectly focused on the retina, which leads to blurry vision. A cornea that is too curved, too flat, or has variations in curves leads to what is commonly called near-sightedness, far-sightedness, and astigmatism. To properly focus the light onto the retina, you can wear corrective lenses or elect for a laser vision correction procedure.
The LASIK Procedure
During your LASIK procedure, your surgeon will use a cool, precise laser to gently reshape the curve of your cornea. By reshaping the curve, your eye will be able to focus images more clearly on the retina without the use of corrective lenses.
To start your procedure, your eyes will be gently numbed using anesthetic drops. An eyelid support will be used to help you avoid blinking during the procedure.
Your surgeon will then create a thin, precise flap on the surface of your eye. This will allow your surgeon to gently reshape your cornea for your customized vision correction. Following the reshaping process, the thin flap is placed back into position, where it will bond with your eye without the need for stitches.
The entire LASIK procedure takes just minutes and you will notice the results of your LASIK procedure immediately. Many people are able to return to work and most daily activities within 24 hours of their procedure.
LASIK Technology and Options
There are three main technology options for your LASIK procedure:
Technology for creating the thin, precise flap
Technology for reshaping your cornea
Technology for measuring your eye and optimizing your procedure accuracy
Technology for creating the thin, precise flap
There are two options for creating the thin flap on the surface of your eye. Some surgeons use a handheld blade called a microkeratome to create the flap. At Vance Thompson Vision, we use precise, computer-controlled femtosecond laser technology to create the flap for your LASIK procedure. This technology allows us to fully customize your flap measurement and offer the most precision possible through a completely bladeless LASIK procedure.
Because bladeless LASIK affords the surgeon greater precision and predictability in creating the flap than traditional LASIK, each flap is more specifically designed and therefore able to be more securely repositioned.
The accuracy of this computer-controlled procedure significantly reduces the possibility of complications.
Not only has bladeless LASIK made vision correction more exact and predictable, but its unique level of precision also makes it more accommodating to patients who may not have been candidates for laser vision correction in the past. Through its increased accuracy and safety, this technology allows for correction even in cases of above-average pupil size, thinner corneas, and higher corrections.
Vance Thompson Vision is proud to utilize four different femtosecond laser platforms for creating your custom flap, including the IntraLase IFS and the Wavelight FS500 lasers. We are committed to ensuring you receive the ideal laser flap technology for your unique eye.
Technology for reshaping your cornea
After creating the flap, your surgeon will use a cool excimer laser to gently reshape your cornea. This excimer laser is used to permanently change the shape of the cornea, or the outer layer of the eye. Vance Thompson Vision is proud to offer not one, but two excimer laser options to ensure you receive the ideal treatment for your eye - the Wavelight Allegretto 500 kHz in addition to the VisX Star V.
The excimer laser generates its power from light in the ultraviolet range and cannot be seen by the human eye. Because the laser does not generate any heat, there is no tissue damage as a result of the laser light. As the treatment with the laser proceeds, microscopic layers of tissue, approximately 1/10th the width of a human hair, are removed. The laser is programmed to remove precisely the amount of tissue needed to achieve the desired result.
Technology for measuring your eye and customizing your procedure
In addition to our femtosecond laser flap technology and multiple excimer laser platforms, Vance Thompson Vision is proud to offer additional technology for mapping your eye and optimizing your procedure outcomes.
Custom LASIK is the first FDA-approved procedure completely customized for your vision. During a Custom LASIK procedure, we use a Wavefront device to transmit a ray of light through your eye and measure the exact path it travels. This complex measurement is used to create a detailed Wavefront Map, which is the optical “fingerprint” of your eye. Using this map, we can completely customize your LASIK procedure with precision and accuracy for better results.
While 90% of blurry or irregular vision is caused by the curve and shape of the cornea, which are called “lower order aberrations,” about 10% of vision irregularities are caused by smaller issues known as “higher order aberrations.” Using Wavefront technology, we can now account for and correct these additional vision issues to improve the outcomes of your LASIK procedure.
Custom LASIK is the first and only completely bladeless LASIK procedure to utilize an all-laser approach to make the corneal flap and customize the correction through Wavefront-guided technology. The result is a precise and customized outcome for your vision.
What To Expect?
It’s important to have clear and realistic expectations for your LASIK surgery. The goal of LASIK is to reduce or eliminate your dependence on glasses or contacts. While most patients are very satisfied with their vision results after their procedure, LASIK does not always guarantee perfect vision.
After your procedure, you will meet regularly with your surgeon and home optometrist to measure your results and monitor your vision. Each patient adjusts to their vision correction a little differently, and your surgeon and optometrist will answer your questions in the days and months after your procedure.
Some patients will still need occasional reading or driving glasses after the procedure is completed. Others may need a minor LASIK fine-tune to fully optimize their results. Vance Thompson Vision uses the most advanced technology and surgical process to ensure you receive the best possible LASIK experience and result.
The Ideal LASIK Candidate
Technological advancements continue to allow more people to qualify for laser or implant vision correction than ever before. Generally speaking, anyone who sees well with glasses or contacts and has not had a significant increase in their prescription in the last 12 months is most likely a good candidate. On the other hand, those who have certain medical conditions may not be good candidates.
The specialists at Vance Thompson Vision will help you evaluate your options with an extremely thorough eye exam and take the opportunity to learn more about you, your expectations and your lifestyle. All of these factors play an important role in choosing the laser or implant vision correction procedure that’s right for your eyes.
LASIK Risks and Considerations
LASIK has been performed on millions of patients and is a proven and tested surgical procedure. Our goal is to ensure you understand all the potential benefits and risks of the LASIK procedure.
While LASIK is an FDA-approved procedure, as with any type of surgery, risks are involved. After your pre-operative evaluation, you will have a good idea about the risks and what they mean to your specific visual situation. It is important to discuss any concerns with your surgeon and weigh all the risks and potential benefits. Each patient's vision is different and different treatment options are available in order to give you the best possible result.
The only way to determine if LASIK is right for you is to come in and discuss your options with our LASIK coordinator and surgeon. At Vance Thompson Vision, we are committed to safety and patient care. As a result, we continually invest in the latest technology and the most advanced procedures. If you are not a candidate for LASIK eye surgery, there may be other options.
We look forward to discussing your specific visual situation and helping you determine the best possible solution for your vision.
- Procedure Time
- 20 minutes
- Follow Up Time
- 1 day, 1 week, 1 month
- Recovery Location
Your Next Step
We invite you to begin your LASIK journey today and reduce your dependence on glasses and contact lenses. Call to schedule your free LASIK consultation or click on the Contact Us button to learn more.