Frequently Asked Questions
The team at Ocala Eye has compiled the following frequently asked questions on cataract surgery and laser vision correction. Based in Ocala, Florida, our ophthalmology offices provide comprehensive eye care and we are always available to answer your questions or address any of your concerns.
To learn more about cataract surgery and laser vision correction or other services we offer including NearVisionSM CK®, lens implants from TECNIS, ReSTOR, and Crystalens, cornea transplant surgery, glaucoma treatment, retinal surgery, blepharoplasty ocular plastic surgery, contact Ocala Eye today.
LASIK – Laser Vision Correction
In most cases, yes! Check with your employer or plan provider to verify the details of your plan, but this is a great way to pay for LASIK using your pre-tax income.
LASIK (Laser-Assisted Stromal In-situ Keratomileusis) has become the procedure of choice among refractive surgeons around the world. This laser vision correction procedure, available at Ocala Eye in Florida, combines two proven techniques – Excimer laser photoablation and keratomileusis – for the correction of myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), and astigmatism (non-symmetrical curvature of the eye). Keratomileusis, or cutting of the cornea, has been performed for almost 40 years. It involves peeling a thin flap from the surface of the eye using only numbing eye drops. The Excimer laser is then used to reshape the eye under the protection of this flap. The flap is then returned to its place where it heals without the need for any sutures. This results in relatively rapid and painless correction of vision allowing both eyes to be corrected on the same day.
A good candidate for LASIK must:
- Be at least 21 years old
- Have a stable prescription for at least a year
- Have no pre-existing corneal diseases
- Not have certain medical conditions
- Not be pregnant or nursing
- Have realistic expectations about laser vision correction (see below)
The range of correction possible with LASIK is: Myopia from -1.00 to -14.00 diopters, Astigmatism of up to 5.00 diopters, Hyperopia up to +6.00 diopters. An ophthalmologist at our laser vision correction offices in Ocala, Florida can go over other factors that would bar a patient from receiving LASIK.
Yes, the extremely low complication rate has been a primary reason for the popularity of LASIK worldwide. The risk of a serious problem resulting in any loss of vision is about 0.01 percent. More common but less serious problems include under or over corrections, flap-related problems, infection, dry eyes, and night vision problems. There have been no cases of blindness or loss of the eye with LASIK in the United States.
There is minimal discomfort with LASIK. Some patients even report absolutely no discomfort during the laser vision correction procedure. At Ocala Eye, topical anesthetic (numbing) eye drops are used prior to the procedure. As the microkeratome is applied to the surface of the eye, some patients may experience a pressure sensation. The cutting of the flap itself is painless, as is the laser treatment. After laser vision correction, some patients may experience a foreign body sensation, like an eyelash in the eye, for several hours.
In most cases, CustomVue™ Wavefront™ LASIK should be performed at the initial time treatment. This is because corneal tissue is removed during the vision correction process. Once the tissue has been removed with standard LASIK, it is not possible to perform further correction without removing additional tissue, possibly resulting in over-correction. An exception to this would be in a patient who previously had standard LASIK but was under-corrected, allowing the additional correction to be performed with CustomVue™ Wavefront™ LASIK.
Most patients are opting to have LASIK performed on both eyes on the same day, although this is an individual choice. Advantages include convenience, decreased time lost from work, and easier visual recovery because there is no imbalance between the two eyes when they are both corrected. Disadvantages include safety concerns (for instance, in the rare event of infection, both eyes may be affected) and accuracy concerns (if an overcorrection occurs in one eye, it is likely to occur in the other). An ophthalmologist at our laser vision correction offices in Ocala, Florida can further discuss the advantages and disadvantages of having LASIK performed on both eyes during one visit.
After laser vision correction is performed, patients are sent home with a sleeping pill and are asked to rest with the eyes closed as much as possible until the follow-up visit the next day. Patients with lower amounts of myopia may have vision good enough to drive the next day but should be cautious. Patients who have higher degrees of myopia may actually be overcorrected initially and may experience somewhat blurry vision. This usually lasts for days to weeks depending on the amount of correction. Prescription eye drops will be used for four days following the surgery at which time the patient will be seen again. Barring any difficulties, the follow-up visits will be at one, three, six, and 12 months, except in cases where an enhancement is anticipated.
Ocala Eye is the only practice in North Central Florida (within a 15 county area) that offers comprehensive medical and surgical eye care. We have fellowship-trained specialists in all major areas of the eye. In keeping with this comprehensive philosophy, our refractive surgeons offer all currently available refractive surgical procedures, although we recommend CustomVue™ LASIK for most of our laser vision correction patients. Our surgeons were the first in North Central Florida to perform LASIK, and our surgery center is the only one in the area that is VISX-certified.
At Ocala Eye, we currently use the VISX S4™ Excimer Laser with pupil tracking. This laser uses Fourier Wavefront™ analysis and treatment, the most sophisticated Wavefront™ algorithm available in the U.S. today. The laser is kept in a dedicated laser suite with computerized climate control, constantly monitoring temperature and humidity to ensure the highest possible accuracy in our treatments.
The most important things a patient must have prior to any refractive surgical procedure are realistic expectations. The goal of these procedures is to decrease one's dependence on corrective lenses (glasses or contact lenses). The vast majority of our patients (approximately 98 percent) will see 20/40 or better after LASIK, but there is no guarantee of the outcome. In addition to the many variables related to the surgery itself, every eye heals differently. If the vision is not satisfactory after the initial treatment and there is a residual refractive error, this can possibly be corrected with a retreatment (enhancement). It is also important to know that the correction of distance vision is independent of near or reading vision. The inability to read without glasses (presbyopia) normally occurs after the age of 40 and this is not corrected by refractive surgery. In addition, the correction of the distance vision in many patients over age 40 may result in the need for reading glasses at an earlier age. An ophthalmologist at our laser vision correction offices in Ocala, Florida can further discuss the outcome of your LASIK surgery.
The cost of the procedure is reasonable if one considers the costs associated with glasses or contact lenses over one's lifetime. Although many patients pay the costs up front, financing options are available. We will be more than happy to discuss financing and other payment options for laser vision correction.
We are pleased to offer vision procedure financing, including interest-free plans, through Chase Health Advance. Click here for more information.
Contact Ocala Eye for more information on laser vision correction. Our Ocala, Florida area offices can send you literature about the procedure. You may also visit us during one of our free seminars or schedule a free screening and consultation with one of our surgeons. If you are a potential candidate and would like to proceed, we will have you return for a more formal, complete eye examination. The examination will include dilation of the eyes, measurement of the cornea, and a review of medical history to check for pre-existing diseases. It is imperative to discontinue the use of contact lenses (at least three days for soft lenses and three weeks for rigid gas permeable lenses) prior to the evaluation in order for the cornea to return to its natural shape. After your visit, you may continue using the contact lenses again, but will be asked to remove them at least several days before the laser vision correction surgery.
To learn more about laser vision correction in the Ocala, Florida area, contact our Refractive Coordinator today.
A cataract is a clouding or discoloration of the natural lens.
No, the cataract has to be visually significant before cataract surgery. The longer the cataract is in the eye, the harder it is to remove.
Generally cataract surgery does not hurt. Cataract surgery is performed at our Ocala, Florida offices with a local anesthetic therefore you shouldn’t feel anything. Occasionally, you might feel some slight discomfort. If you should experience any discomfort, please make your doctor aware.
No, cataracts are removed with rapid frequency sound waves called ultrasound. A laser, however, is used in other areas of treatment for the eye.
All doctors, including ours at Ocala Eye, prefer to do cataract surgery one eye at a time.
The surgical procedure itself takes approximately 30 minutes, but cataract surgery patients can expect to be at our Ocala, Florida surgery center approximately two to four hours for the preparation and recovery period.
Yes, a intraocular lens (IOL) implant is used to replace the human lens. This prevents the patient from wearing thick glasses or contact lenses after cataract surgery.
No. Once implants have been placed in the eye and they have healed in place, they are very difficult to remove. Crystalens®, ReSTOR®, and other newer types of implants are best suited for people who have never had cataract surgery before.
In many cases we perform no-stitch cataract surgery at Ocala Eye. If the doctor feels it is beneficial to the patient, the doctor may use a suture, though usually just one. This suture, if needed, is buried and slowly absorbable, so our patients are unaware that it is there.
The cataract will not grow back, but at a later time the tissue behind the lens implant may become clouded. This condition is known as capsular fibrosis and it can be painlessly treated with a laser.
The lens implant will last for the rest of your life.
In most cases you will require glasses after cataract surgery, especially for reading. You may require a very thin lens to see distant objects along with normal reading glasses.
You will receive a new pair of glasses usually six weeks after cataract surgery. This will give the eye time to heal, giving you the best possible vision after surgery.
Your ability to return to work usually depends on your occupation. Most people can return to work the day after cataract surgery once a doctor has given his approval.
Each patient’s case is evaluated on an individual basis, though generally patients can drive 24 hours after cataract surgery. Please ask your doctor at Ocala Eye in Florida for more information.
You can wash your hair right after cataract surgery, but do not let the water run directly into the eyes.
You will usually be able to engage in physical activity the day after cataract surgery. You should consult your Ocala Eye doctor for more information on your individual case.
You may swim two weeks after cataract surgery.
You should avoid wearing eye make-up for at least one week after cataract surgery.
Today, over 30 million senior Americans (over age 60) and perhaps an equal number of Baby-Boomers suffer from hearing loss. Of those people, over 80% are undiagnosed and untreated. Hearing loss is one of the most common chronic health care problems facing older adults today. Recent studies have shown that up to 50% of the Baby Boomer population is experiencing significant hearing loss as much as 20 years earlier in life than previous generations.
Unfortunately, statistics suggest fewer than 15 percent of family doctors address hearing loss and virtually none of them have testing facilities or treatment options available in their offices. Because most hearing loss tends to be gradual over time, the symptoms may go unnoticed during a typical doctor visit. To be sure, you should schedule a comprehensive hearing evaluation with Ocala Eye’s Board-Certified licensed hearing specialist Kate Maen.
- Difficulty hearing conversations in crowded places
- Ringing or other noises in your ears
- Others telling you that you don’t seem to hear them
- Others complaining that you watch TV with the volume too high
- Frequently asking others to repeat themselves
- It seems like people are mumbling in everyday conversations
- Difficulty understanding women or young children’s voices
- Trouble knowing where sounds are coming from
Most other testing centers will perform some variation of standard air bone and speech testing. Ocala Eye performs the most comprehensive examination available. Utilizing the latest state-of-the-art technology we systematically perform a series of tests designed to predict the body’s neurological and mechanical abilities to detect and amplify sound as well as determining abilities to interpret speech. Testing is performed in a comfortable surrounding and requires about 45 minutes.
Our patient-friendly testing equipment will generate a thorough and detailed report which will be interpreted by our staff hearing specialist. Your questions will be answered and appropriate recommendations made. At the conclusion of the exam you will have a precise understanding of your hearing capabilities.
Untreated hearing loss is more noticeable than you might think. It has been shown to dramatically impact quality of life. When you can’t hear and consistently misunderstand conversations, the changes in your behavior may be far more noticeable than wearing hearing aids. Many people with hearing loss discontinue social activities resulting in isolation and depression.
Our experienced Ocala Eye hearing instrument specialist will select and apply the best hearing aid style and fit based on your lifestyle needs and hearing loss.
Absolutely. At Ocala Eye, we have a 30-day trial period. If you are dissatisfied with your hearing aid, you can return it within the 30-day period and receive a refund or exchange for a different style.
No. Ocala Eye offers a full line of hearing aids with many different features and benefits depending on your needs. Only an experienced professional is attuned to these differences and can best prescribe a suitable solution for you.
Our hearing aids are competitively priced and available all price ranges. We avoid promotional pricing, discontinued devices and misleading advertisements which can make the process of selecting a hearing aid confusing. Ocala Eye also provides patient financing for hearing aids including no-interest and extended payment plans.
While the comprehensive hearing evaluation is typically covered by Medicare and insurance, the hearing aid is not covered by Medicare and only rarely covered by insurance.
Yes! Hearing aids are a medical device and as such are tax deductible, however, we advise you consult your tax advisor to keep abreast of new changes to the tax law.
Because you have two ears, you naturally hear in stereo. Most patients will be prescribed two hearing aids because most hearing loss occurs symmetrically in both ears.
This is called feedback. Air escaping from the sides of a hearing aid is picked up by the microphone and “feedback” creates a whistling sound. The newest and most sophisticated hearing aid technology allows us to eliminate feedback altogether for most patients.
Today’s hearing aids use directional microphones and advanced programming to detect human speech and distinguish it from all other unwanted noise.
At Ocala Eye, 85% of first time users choose virtually invisible and exceptionally comfortable hearing aids which are ready to wear and can be fit on the same day as the hearing evaluation. People who have been wearing older style hearing aids are delighted when they try our new smaller, lighter hearing and experience their unparalleled clarity of sound.
To learn more or to schedule your appointment, call 352.622.5183 or