Diabetes & LASIK – Candidacy Considerations

Over one million people have LASIK each year making it one of the most commonly performed medical surgeries. With its popularity, many people have come to believe that virtually anyone can have LASIK performed on them. This is not the case. There are several factors that go into determining if a patient is a candidate. Many medical conditions can prevent one from having the procedure including diabetes, a condition in which a person’s blood sugar is too high. If you or a loved one suffers from diabetes and are interested in having LASIK, read on for important information.

Diabetes can have drastic effects on the eyes. It is the most common cause of blindness in working age adults. High blood sugar can cause the lens of the eye to swell, making you unable to see clearly. This is typically a temporary problem that can be resolved by getting blood sugars back into the target range. More serious problems that can be caused by diabetes are cataracts, glaucoma and retinopathy. Each poses a serious permanent threat of vision loss if left untreated.

Diabetes alone will not exclude you from having LASIK. What may exclude you from having LASIK is having uncontrolled blood sugars, as this can affect your post surgery outcome. People with type 1 diabetes may be at a higher risk of needing an enhancement (LASIK retreatment) because there is more unpredictability in the healing process.

Prior to having LASIK, one must go through a pre-operative examination. During this exam, the doctor will perform a comprehensive series of tests including a retinal exam. The doctor may also request a report from your physician detailing your blood glucose levels to verify they are controlled.

If you or a loved one has diabetes and is interested in having LASIK, talk to your eye doctor or schedule a pre-operative examination with a qualified LASIK surgeon. It is always best to have a LASIK surgeon determine candidacy as this is their area of expertise. You will also be able to discuss any questions or concerns you may have. LASIK has helped millions of people enjoy unaided, clear vision. To learn more about Raleigh Eye Center or to schedule an appointment, visit us online at www.raleigheyecenter.com.