Eye Care Question of the Week: #7


Are there any alternatives to laser eye surgery?


If you have been seriously contemplating going for laser eye surgery then this is an important question to ask yourself. This topic is also of interest for anyone who has already inquired about refractive surgery options but has been denied for any number of reasons: age, unstable prescription, thin corneas, high farsightedness or high nearsightedness, etc. Most patients who present to our clinic for a preliminary laser eye surgery consultation are looking to get away from eyeglasses. This may be for cosmetic reasons, lifestyle, or occupational requirements.  But do you know some of your alternatives?

One alternative to laser eye surgery is overnight or continuous wear contact lenses such as the Air Optix Night & Day by Ciba Vision. This product is one of the most studied contact lenses in the world and has a proven track record. For the right candidate this type of contact lens can offer excellent vision quality. Also, if your prescription changes you can quickly update your contact lens power as opposed to having to go through a laser eye surgery enhancement procedure. The other benefit of overnight contact lenses is that you know instantly how well you’re going to see, as there is no waiting period or healing time. From a financial perspective, an annual supply of these contact lenses is about one tenth the cost of laser eye procedures. On the downside however, there is still a small chance of developing an eye infection from sleeping in an overnight contact lens. Also, these contact lenses do not provide correction for astigmatism, which means that about 20% of patients are unable to wear them.

Another alternative to laser eye surgery is 1-Day disposable contact lenses, such as Dailies Aqua Comfort Plus or Acuvue TruEye. For many contact lens patients it’s simply the hassle of taking care of their contact lenses or forgetting when they last changed them. For these individuals a single use 1-Day disposable contact lens may be a great alternative. 1-Day disposable contact lenses also show a reduced prevalence of eye infections when compared to continuous wear overnight contact lenses or traditional 2-Week or 1-Month disposable contact lenses. These contact lenses may also be a great alternative for patients who suffer from dry eye syndrome and are not a candidate for overnight contact lens wear. Once again, an annual supply of these contact lenses are about one tenth the cost of laser eye surgery procedures, and your prescription can be quickly be updated.

To book a preliminary laser eye surgery consultation or to discuss some of your alternatives, please book an eye health examination with one of the optometrists at eye-bar.


eye-bar optometry in Sherwood Park - Eye Exams, Contact Lenses, Emergency Visits & Ophthalmology Referrals