New Eye Problems Reported by Some After LASIK

HealthDay News — Nine out of 10 laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) patients report satisfaction afterwards, although a sizable percentage experience new visual disturbances up to six months after the procedure, according to research published online in JAMA Ophthalmology.

In one study, researchers reviewed responses from 240 active-duty Navy personnel one and three months after LASIK surgery. Half were young adults. The other study analyzed responses from 271 civilians, average age 32, up to six months after they had LASIK surgery at one of five centers in the United States. 

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"Some of the problems reported included debilitating vision symptoms (seeing starbursts, glare, ghosting, or halos) and severe dry eye," research coauthor Malvina Eydelman, MD, of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in Silver Spring, Maryland., told HealthDay. For some, everyday activities and nighttime driving become difficult, she noted.

"Up to 46% of participants who had no visual symptoms before surgery reported at least one visual symptom at three months after surgery," Eydelman said. "They most often developed halos. Up to 40% of participants with no halos before LASIK had halos three months following surgery." In addition, up to 28% of participants with no symptoms of dry eyes before LASIK reported them three months after their surgery, Eydelman added. "This is consistent with previous studies," she said.

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