Risks of Surgery
The most significant risks and complications are:
Great efforts are made at the time of surgery to reduce the possibility of infection. The surface of the eye and the skin around the eye is disinfected and the patient's face except for the eye is covered with sterile drapes. All the instruments are sterilized and after the surgery antibiotic drops are prescribed. Even with all of these precautions, infections occur in approximately 1 out of every 3000 cases. Symptoms are excessive redness, pain, light sensitivity and worsening vision.
Is very uncommon since the location of the incision is through the cornea.
- Retinal Detachment:
Patients who are nearsighted have an increased risk of this.
- Glaucoma (High Pressure in the eye):
Occasionally after surgery, fluid that is used during surgery does not drain from the eye causing the pressure inside the eye to increase. You will experience headaches or sharp pain in the eye. Medications are used to lower the pressure during this time.
- Corneal Swelling:
Is the cornea responding to the insertion of the surgical instruments during surgery. It can develop a few hours after surgery. You may notice things looking a bit distorted. This usually improves on its' own but eye drops can be prescribed to resolve this. In some cases, if the cornea does not recover, you will require a corneal transplant.
The chance of having a minor complication is about 1 in 100. This includes things like irritation from the drops, scratchy eye and some the problems listed above.
However, most of these can still be corrected. The chance of a vision threatening problem which could result in loss of vision for you is 1 in 500. ( 0.2%)
* You can take most eye drops the day of surgery. If you are on PILOCARPINE, you must stop it the day prior to surgery but continue them again the day after your surgery.