At Belmont Eye Center in New York, Sandra Belmont, MD, FACS, hears many questions about LASIK laser eye surgery. To help you gather some preliminary information about the vision correction procedure, here are five frequently asked questions from her New York City LASIK patients.

Why should I choose Belmont Eye Center?

A woman's eyeBelmont Eye Center is a premier practice for individuals seeking laser vision correction in New York City. Dr. Sandra Belmont is a LASIK and PRK pioneer who has held numerous prestigious positions in her field. She has a world-class reputation as a leading ophthalmologist and eye surgeon. Dr. Belmont is the “Doctors’ Doctor” and many top doctors routinely ask her to perform their own laser vision correction.

Does laser vision correction treatment hurt?

No, the treatment itself is painless. Some patients may experience some irritation for one to three days after treatment. Many patients compare this to a sensation of sand in the eye. Your doctor can prescribe pain medication to alleviate any discomfort during the recovery.

How long does the LASIK procedure take?

The LASIK treatment itself typically takes less than one minute per eye. Including the time it takes to prepare the treatment area (i.e., sterilizing the treatment area and administering topical anesthetic eye drops), the entire treatment takes about 15 minutes per eye.

How much time I do need to request off from work?

It depends on your job. Many of Dr. Belmont’s patients that have desk jobs return to work within a few days. Patients that have physically demanding jobs might need to take an additional day or two off from work.

Will my vision be blurry after surgery?

Initially, your vision will be blurry, but it should clear up within 24 hours of your procedure.

Can I watch TV or use my iPad after surgery?

Ideally, you should give your eyes a break for the first 24 hours after surgery, and refrain from reading, watching television and using your iPad and other electronic devices. Dr. Belmont recommends her patients relax or sleep as much as possible.

When can I resume wearing eye makeup?

Avoid wearing eye makeup for 10 days after surgery.

When can I start exercising after surgery?

A woman joggingGentle physical activity is permitted the day after surgery, but any strenuous activities should be avoided for a week. You cannot risk getting sweat in your eyes, rubbing your eyes or coming into sudden contact while playing sports or exercising.

Can I go in a pool after surgery?

Avoid pools and Jacuzzis for two weeks after surgery. Showering is permitted, as long as you avoid getting water in your eyes.

Can I wear eyelash extensions after eye surgery?

You must wait three weeks after surgery to have eyelash extensions applied. If you already have them on at the time or surgery, leave them on.

Can I drive myself home from the appointment?

No, your vision will be blurry and you might feel a little groggy. Arrange for a companion to drive you home and help you get situated in a comfortable sleeping position.

Will I still need reading glasses after LASIK?

The answer depends on certain factors. For instance, if you are over the age of 40, you may require reading glasses after surgery to see objects close up. This is because most individuals over the age of 40 develop presbyopia, an age-related condition that affects a person’s ability to see up close. LASIK cannot prevent presbyopia. However, during LASIK surgery, it may be possible for Dr. Belmont to correct one eye so it sees well in the distance and the other eye so it sees well close up, reducing or eliminating the need for reading glasses after surgery. This is called monovision. During your consultation, Dr. Belmont will establish whether you could benefit from monovision vision correction.

If I have cataracts, can I still have laser vision correction?

Yes. Laser vision correction procedures such as PRK and LASIK address the cornea, while cataracts affect the eye’s natural lens.

Can I undergo surgery if I have astigmatism?

Yes, in most cases where the astigmatism is regular. Dr. Belmont will need to personally assess your eyes to determine whether you are a candidate for LASIK or PRK.

What are the LASIK-related risks and possible complications?

Although every type of surgery has some inherent risks, the complications associated with LASIK surgery are rare. This is because the laser vision procedure uses a computer-controlled cool beam of light that is extremely precise and dramatically decreases any room for error. Approximately 3 to 5 percent of LASIK patients report minor difficulties like dry eyes or glare at night. The incidence is even less frequent with Advanced PRK.

Is it possible to experience a serious complication and go blind from surgery?

There are no known cases of anyone suffering from blindness due to the procedure. Dr. Belmont is an excellent surgeon with many years of real-world experience. She is also very careful when screening candidates, and does not recommend laser vision correction if the patient has any pre-existing conditions or takes any medications that could possibly affect the visual outcome.

How much does LASIK treatment cost?

A woman smiling and holding a piggy bankThe overall cost of LASIK surgery varies by patient, depending on several factors, such as whether both eyes are being treated and if the patient chooses all-laser LASIK. To receive a cost estimate, please contact Belmont Eye Center for a consultation, so Dr. Belmont can evaluate your vision health and listen to your surgical objectives.

For our patients’ convenience, we accept several forms of payment, including bank or personal checks, MasterCard and Visa. Financing is also available, for those who qualify, through CareCredit, a third-party healthcare financing organization. CareCredit offers low monthly payments, several payment plan options and other helpful features. To apply for CareCredit financing online, please click here.

Have More Questions about LASIK or PRK?

If you have additional questions about laser vision correction, please contact Belmont Eye Center today.