How We Reduce Anxiety in LASIK Patients
By Andrew E Holzman, MD FACS on May 17, 2018
Dr. Andrew E. Holzman has performed LASIK on thousands of patients to reduce or eliminate their need for glasses and contact lenses. The LASIK procedure is highly effective and safe, boasting an excellent success rate and low risk of complications.
Despite this, the majority of prospective patients have some degree of apprehension about undergoing treatment. At Dr. Holzman’s practice, there are several things that we do to reduce anxiety in LASIK patients. Read on to learn more, and then contact our Washington, DC practice to schedule your LASIK consultation with us.
The Use of an Oral Sedative
About a half hour before your LASIK procedure begins, we will provide you with oral anti-anxiety medication. This will help you feel more relaxed and calm.
We will not begin your procedure until you feel ready. If you still feel stressed 30 minutes after taking your medication, we can give you another dose. Once you feel ready, we will proceed with your LASIK procedure.
Numbing Eye Drops
Many patients worry about experiencing pain during LASIK surgery. But the use of a local anesthetic, or numbing eye drops, prevents any discomfort during the procedure. Instead, patients may feel light pressure as Dr. Holzman uses the state-of-the-art LASIK equipment to create the corneal flap and reshape the cornea.
Black Out Eye Drops
Another common concern among LASIK patients is the idea of being able to see the procedure that is being performed on the eyes. Patients do not need to worry about this because we will apply special eye drops that temporarily black out vision during the LASIK procedure. You will not be able to see the surgical procedure at all.
We understand that any procedure involving the eyes can cause anxiety in patients. That is why we want to review how quick the procedure actually is. The laser will come into contact with each eye two times: once to make the corneal incision, and once to reshape the cornea.
It takes less than 30 seconds per eye to create the corneal incision. The laser reshaping portion of the procedure takes 20 to 50 seconds per eye. In all, the actual laser contact with the eyes typically takes less than five minutes.
To help patients feel more comfortable during treatment, Dr. Holzman will walk you through each step of the procedure, waiting until he gets the go-ahead from you to proceed. If you ever feel uncomfortable or stressed, we can pause the procedure until you feel calm and ready to resume treatment.
After LASIK Surgery
Some patients have anxiety about the side effects they may experience after the procedure, most notably about any pain that will occur.
It is true that patients will experience some discomfort once the numbing eye drops wear off; you can expect this to last for a few hours. However, patients can follow these tips to manage pain in the hours after LASIK:
- Take your pain medication before the eye drops wear off. Continue to take as directed to prevent pain.
- Try to take a nap as soon as you get home after the procedure. The effects of the anti-anxiety medication will help you feel tired. Keeping the eyes closed helps them to feel more comfortable.
- Wear your LASIK goggles so you don’t accidentally touch or rub the eyes.
- Use lubricating eye drops.
To schedule your LASIK consultation, contact Dr. Holzman’s practice today.