After years of wanting, researching, waiting, and saving my money I finally got LASIK (laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis) eye surgery. I wore glasses and contacts for the past 15 years and was a slave to assisted sight. All that changed a few days ago after my lasik surgery and now I am seeing not a perfect 20/20, but an even better 20/15. Lasik is definitely going to be life changing for me and I can’t wait to continue to enjoy my freedom from contacts and glasses!
If you’re interested in getting LASIK in Hawaii here are a few tips and things to know…
- Get your corneas measured. This is the make or break if you are a candidate for lasik. If you’re corneas are too thin you will not be able to get lasik eye surgery. The test is painless, very simple, and takes two seconds, but your eye doctor needs to have the special machine.
- LASIK is expensive. Lasik can cost between $2,000 to $5,000 depending on the eye surgeon and lasik machine and none of it is covered by insurance (except for prescription eye drops). I opted for the custom, high quality lasik and it was on the higher end. If you have healthy eyes that are pretty straight forward I don’t think it matters too much where you go. The lower end procedures can be just effected, but kind of like an inexpensive meal, it gets the job done, but you get what you pay for.
- Best Eye Surgeon on the island is Dr. Tyrie Jenkins. I didn’t want to mess around and went with Dr. Jenkins who has a long impressive list of credentials and has done over 10,000 laser refractive surgeries. My experience with her and her office staff was first class, and I would absolutely recommend her for surgery or regular eye care.
- Dr. Alan Faulkner and the Aloha Laser Vision Center has the best machine on the island. In researching, I learned that the machine is the most important component and Dr. Faulkner uses the IntraLase® FS laser, the most progressive machine on the island. Dr. Jenkins shares the Dr. Faulkner’s machine, so I was happy to have the best surgeon and the best machine.
- If you wear contacts be prepared to wear your glasses 2 weeks to 1 month before surgery. Contacts change the shape of your eyes, so you must be without contacts for a length of time before your surgery to get an accurate mapping of your eye for the surgery.
- The surgery takes only about 5 minutes. After years of planning and anticipation of the my surgery, I was at the surgery center for about 30 minutes total and the actual surgery took only about 5 minutes. I was blown away how fast it was.
- One night downtime. After the surgery for about 1 hour I had discomfort and slight burning in my eyes, but after a valium and a good night’s rest I was up and about the next day enjoying my new vision. The next day I was able to resume my normal activities like driving, etc. and the only set back seemed to be taking all my eye drops multiple times a day.
- No surfing for minimum a week post-op. Bummers for me, but no watersports for atleast a week after my surgery. At my one week post-op appointment I hopefully will be getting the green light that everything healed up nicely and I can get back in the water!