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Why Your Eye Doctor Keeps Saying You Are Not a Good Candidate For LASIK?

During your initial exam here at Saddleback Eye Center, Dr. Manger will determine if you are a good candidate for LASIK. Routinely, 80% of patients are great candidates for LASIK. Only 20% are not, and this is usually due to an underlying eye health condition. Shockingly, half of the patients who are great candidates had been previously told by their eye doctor they could not get LASIK. There is a high amount of inaccurate advice given to people considering LASIK eye surgery in Orange County.

A few common reasons people are told they are not good candidates for LASIK include astigmatism, only needing reading glasses, unstable prescription, and age. Dr. Manger has been correcting astigmatism and/or the need for reading glasses with LASIK for over 25 years. If you have been told LASIK cannot correct either of these conditions, it is untrue. During the LASIK exam, we will test your corneas and make sure they are healthy and stable before recommending LASIK eye surgery. As far as your prescription being stable, small changes in glasses prescription year to year are nothing to be concerned with. However, large changes in your prescription from year to year would likely preclude you from having LASIK until your prescription has stopped changing. For most people, vision stabilizes in their late teens or early 20’s. Regarding age, we at Saddleback Eye Center have heard many times people being told they can’t have LASIK if you’re over 40 because that’s too old. We have also heard you may be too young and have to wait until you are over the age of 40 to get LASIK. Which is it? The truth is, as long as you’re over the age of 18 you can be a great candidate for LASIK. Age has no factor as long as the eyes are healthy.

Why is there so much false information about being a LASIK candidate? There are three main reasons why this may happen. First, inexperienced surgeons are not as confident in their ability to take on more complicated cases as Dr. Manger. It is easier for these doctors to tell you that you are not a candidate and only accept easy prescriptions to perform surgery on. Secondly, some optometrists are not knowledgeable of new technology and what is possible with LASIK today. They are unaware that recent advancements in technology allow higher prescriptions to be corrected. Lastly, many patients naively ask their usual optometrist for advice on LASIK. Your optometrist is the person who profits from you needing to buy glasses and contacts every year. From a business perspective, it is easier to gently steer you away from the idea of LASIK so they do not lose you as a lifetime glasses customer.

The only way to find out for sure if you are a good candidate for LASIK is to come in for a 2.5 hour, 14-test LASIK exam with Dr. Manger at Saddleback Eye Center. Dr. Manger will confidently determine if you are a candidate for LASIK. If you are not a candidate, we will explain why and refer you to a specialist who can help.

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