Will A Sneeze Wreck My Laser Eye Surgery?

by Professor Dan Z Reinstein

I try to make my patients feel relaxed before they have Laser Eye Surgery.

But over the years – and I’ve done more than 18,500 procedures – so many of my patients have harboured unfounded fears about the procedure that I wanted to set the record straight. Here are some myths and facts…

The Facts…

  • Laser Eye Surgery should cost at least £4,000 – this covers the right checks and the best technology. It takes the approximately three minutes to treat eye.
  • It does not matter if you move , blink, sneeze or cough during the procedure. A well-trained surgeon and technology ensure that movement do not affect the result.
  • One pulse of the laser removes a quarter of the hundredth of a width of a human hair. Anybody over the age of 18 can have Laser Eye Surgery.
  • It can correct reading vision in ageing eyes as well as long sight and astigmatism. Most patients will be able to see fairly well by the evening of the day of the procedure. Most patients can return to work the next day.
  • The main side effect is dry eyes. How long it takes to settle varies – a few weeks to a few months. There is about 0.1 per cent chance of a minor visual complication. Your surgeon should have carried out at least 100 procedures under supervision.
  • The practice should provide long-term post-operative care.

…And The Myths:

  • The laser is hot – the laser process is actually cold.
  • The smell during the procedure is your eye burning – the odour is carbon atoms generated by the laser.
  • It hurts – there is no pain.
  • It is not permanent – the changes made are permanent.

Click here to learn more myths about laser eye surgery.