Looking into the results of LASIK for patients who are under 25-years-old.
It is no secret that our vision slowly begins to decline with age, typically because of a combination of the normal aging process and because of common age-related vision problems such as glaucoma or cataracts. However, seniors are not the only people who need assistance to improve their vision and require reading glasses to see clearly. Many different people of all ages—from toddlers, to teenagers, to young adults— find that they may need the assistance of prescription lenses to see to their best ability.
However, unlike seniors, many of these younger vision patients may find that wearing prescription lenses each and every day gets in the way of many of their favorite activities and that they can act has quite a hindrance to comfortable, clear vision. For instance, when you are participating in sports regularly, being active outdoors or enjoying summer days spent by the pool, you do not want to worry about contacts or glasses. Therefore, many young people look towards to same solution that adults do to gain clear vision without the assistance of prescription lenses—LASIK surgery.
The Effectiveness of LASIK for Younger Patients
Each and every day, more and more research is being done to show that LASIK surgery is an effective, helpful clear vision solution for patients who are under the age of 25. In fact, a new vision study led by Ronald Rebenitsch, MD., from Durrie Vision in Overland Park, Kansas, suggests that LASIK may actually be somewhat more effective in patients who are younger than 25-years-old, compared to older patients.
In this study, Dr. Rebenitsch and his colleagues conducted a retrospective chart review of more than 5000 eyes of patients who underwent LASIK with primary sub-Bowman’s keratomileusis in 1 or both eyes from 2007 to 2013. The results that they found were that enhancement rates after surgery in 4755 eyes ranged from 3.7% in patients aged 17-25, 4.3% in patients aged 26 to 35, 6.6% in patients aged 36 to 45, and 15.8% in patients aged 46 to 50.
“Statistically better outcomes in all evaluated metrics were seen for younger, appropriately selected patients,” Rebenitsch said. “This surprised us. Anecdotally, we expected the younger patients to do well, but not this well. Initially it was more of a dichotomous comparison, but as we looked at the data further, it became clear that there was an exponential increase in the enhancement rate that was statistically significant.”
Should Younger Patients Undergo LASIK Surgery
Many studies have shown that LASIK surgery is just as safe and effective, if not more so, for patients who are under the age of 25. Plus, because younger patients are typically more active and on-the-go that seniors or older adults, LASIK may be more of a practical, obvious decision for them in the long run. After all, having LASIK surgery early on means less time having to deal with the discomfort, hassle and expenses of prescription lenses.
“Younger patients tend to be more likely to use contact lenses and sleep in their contacts, for instance, so it makes sense to ask about functionality,” Rebenitsch explained.
If you are thinking of undergoing LASIK surgery in order to achieve clear vision, be sure to contact OCLI today. Looking for that perfect graduation present? Why not consider the “Gift of Sight” and give your graduate LASIK!
Our experienced team of LASIK surgeons can help determine whether or not this procedure may be right for you, as well as answer any questions that you may have about the process.