Q&A: Considering having lasik surgery done to clear up my astigmatism?
posted on 8/8/2013
Ask A Doctor Question:
I am considering having lasik surgery done to clear up my astigmatism. I read that if I have a certain type of vision problem, that often when a person gets older and starts to lose his vision do to age, the two problems being the oposite of each other balance themselves out. If I have this certain type of vision problem and have lasik surgery done, then when I get older and start to lose my vision due to age, the two problems will not balance each other out because I would have already eliminated one of the problems. Therefore I will be left with a vision problem due to old age and once again continue to have to use glasses. The story I read did not explain exactly which vision problem it was that balances itself with age so I can check if it is the problem I have. Is all this true? Can you explain a little more in detail how this balancing process works and if i'm better off waiting. - Tobias
--Emil William Chynn, MD, FACS, MBA
New York, NY
If you are younger than 40 then you should not worry about the reading issues you will experience after age 40. There really is not balancing act that you should consider. You will need reading glasses after age 40 whether you have lasik or not. If you want more freedom from glasses then I would explore having lasik sooner rather than later.
Hope that helps.
--HOWARD BUDNER, O.D.
You are referring to presbyopia, in which the near vision decreases with age. If you are nearsighted now, you will always be able to take glasses off to read. If you get LASIK to correct nearsightedness, then you will need reading glasses. But this probelm does not occur until you are in your mid to late 40's. If you are in your mid 30's or younger, go for LASIK, and deal with the reading issue later!
--William S. Goldstein, MD
Shelby Township, MI
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