Eye Free? Eye Ouch!

Cho Ah-young, Kang Da-yonl승인2015.04.06l수정2015.04.06 13:54l0호 0면

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How convenient would it be if I didn’t have to wear glasses or contact lenses at a pool and a public bath? It used to be regarded as only a dream for most
people who wear glasses. However, as an operation which actualized the dream appeared, our ideas changed. The magical operation is known as Lasek or Lasik surgery. It trats visual impairments such as short-sightedness, far-sightedness, and astigmatism by laser. According to the Lasik consumer organization, over 1000 people a year underwent the operation.

▲ The eye being received LASIK surgery.

It has some side effects, but many people go through with the operation even though they know the risks. That is because the inconvenience of wearing glasses or contact lenses is greater than the side effects. In addition, people think the operation is easy because it takes only 10 minutes. But these sentiments are incorrect. The operation has many side effects, such as dry eye syndrome, spark repercussions, ambiopia, and even conical coenea.

The Dankook Herald (DKH) found out more about the dangers of the operation through an interview with a director from the Lasik consumer group. When DKH asked them to explain some real examples of the side effects, the director provided a brief description of the five main potential problems. “There is a conical cornea, which occurs when the cornea protrudes due to intra-ocular pressure, amblyopia. Moreover, it results from corneal damage during operation, corneal opacity, a decentration for the irradiating laser, and amblyopia which is caused by germs such as hepatitis” he said.

DKH also learned why many people think the operation is simple and easy to perform. “The reason is that the operation generally is performed in 15 minutes and many people learn information about it through ophthalmology advertisements. Also, a lot of acquaintances are satisfied with it and it’s not difficult to find people who have had the operation,” he explicitly answered.

The first countermeasure, which people need to do when they experience a serious side effect was also explained. “It is most important to determine whether or not the side effect is caused by a medical mistake. That’s why people should receive a copy of their medical record and grasp all kinds of problems. However, it is very difficult to understand medical care terms. So you’d better ask a medical dispute mediation committee, medical customer service, or this association for help,” he emphasized.

DKH interviewed eye specialist Mr. Lee, who performs Lasik and Lasek in Bundang, to know if there are more procedures today. He said that there are more surgeries being done today than in the past. When DKH asked why the Lasik is considered more dangerous than the Lasek. “The difference is that with Lasik, you have to alter a section of the cornea unlike Lasek. People generally erroneously
thinks that the section will be repaired later. In fact, the section that is cut will never return to the condition it was in pre-surgery. Therefore, Lasik is risky, as there could be risks of infection if the eye is picked or has any impact after surgery.” he answered.

DKH requested the safety guidelines for consumers who have Lasik and Lasek surgery. He stressed that it is important to know your own eye conditions since the cornea thickness, intraocular pressure, sight and size of pupil are different from person to person. Also, he spoke of the first thing that we have to do
when we undergo side-effects such as diplopia after surgery. “If there is any side-effect, you have to return to the hospital where you had surgery and start right remedial treatment upon diagnosis.”

Finally, DKH asked the consumer group for information that people who decide to get the surgery have to know. “There is a document that advises consumers of their rights to a safe surgery and follow-up care. It is the eye-free Lasik surgery warranty that is issued by the Lasik consumer group for free,” the organization responded.

Lasik and Lasek are both eye correction surgeries. Our sight influences our quality of life. If it is damaged, recovery is sometimes impossible. Thus, the present manner of surgery that is unlimited and indiscrete should be changed. This surgery has lots of side-effects and is dangerous, but in some cases, it is clearly needed. Therefore, when you have to have the surgery, you should go to two
hospitals for an assessment to minimize the sideeffects.

Find out if the assessments of your eyes are different in each hospital or if you have any existing eye diseases. In conclude, DKH recommends you to refer to the opinion of the medical team about which surgery is the best fit for you.


Cho Ah-young, Kang Da-yon  dkherald@hotmail.com
<저작권자 © The Dankook Herald, 무단 전재 및 재배포 금지>

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