How To Choose A Laser Eye Surgeon
When choosing your laser eye surgeon, one of the most important things to ask is whether the surgeon has had formal refractive surgery training, and whether they are an expert in the particular procedure you are undergoing.
To become a laser eye surgeon, you must be a qualified doctor (General Medical Council (GMC) registered physician). There is a certificate that one can obtain from the Royal College of Ophthalmologists through a one-day examination, but it is only a very basic qualification that does not cover anything in depth. Unfortunately, the availability of refractive surgery fellowship specialist training is very limited in the UK, so many surgeons learn refractive surgery after qualifying – ie. ‘on the job’. Because of this, standards – unfortunately – vary within the field: it is important to ask whether your surgeon has undergone formal refractive surgery training, for how long, how many procedures he or she performs per week, and whether he or she is also a trained corneal specialist.
As a patient, you should also seek a laser eye surgeon who has experience in the specific Laser Eye Surgery procedure you are interested in (for example, LASIK, ReLEx SMILE, Laser Blended Vision, etc.) You should also check what range of prescriptions your chosen clinic can safely treat; at the London Vision Clinic, thanks to the unparalleled accuracy of our Artemis VHF digital ultrasound technology we are able to safely treat and monitor very high prescriptions, as well as diagnose problems (that can, rarely, arise) to ensure that patients end up with a good outcome.
While more experienced laser eye surgeons will have performed a higher number of procedures, it is important not to assume that high turnover equates to a high quality surgeon with high safety statistics. One of the critical elements here is to ask if your surgeon will be the one to do your first post-operative check (as well as any subsequent post-op visits, if things are not yet settled). While at some clinics, patients will only see their surgeon on their surgery day itself, at London Vision Clinic we believe it is very important for every patient to be seen by their surgeon – the person ultimately responsible for the care of their eyes – on the first day following surgery.
At London Vision Clinic, we’re well aware that sometimes advertising and marketing about Laser Eye Surgery can be full of myths and inaccuracies – and that this makes it difficult to approach the question of finding the best provider. For example, almost every provider says that they have the best technology – which is very confusing (not to mention impossible!)
If you’re considering Laser Eye Surgery, you probably have a lot of questions and concerns about which clinic is right for you. It’s important to investigate all of your options and take time over your decision. If you would like to have an informal, no-obligation conversation with someone at London Vision Clinic, please give us a call on 020 7224 1005 and we’ll be happy to discuss our surgeon’s credentials.