Once you have decided to have a vision correction procedure such as LASIK, the next important thing to do is to find the right surgeon who will ensure that the eye surgery will be safe and effective. Taking time to choose the best surgeon is a vital step in attaining your vision correction goals. It is best to research several providers and do some evaluation first before you select who will perform your procedure. A skilled LASIK surgeon must have the important qualifications that you should consider so that the excellent eye care you deserve will eventually be provided to you.
Here are some of the essential factors that you should look for when choosing a surgeon for your vision correction needs:
Doctors must have occupational qualifications that prove they are fit to practice certain procedures like LASIK eye surgery. They are required to undergo specialized training and licensing necessary to certify their credentials as medical professionals.
Some resources that you can use to check a surgeon’s background are the following:
- Check the state licensing boards to see the list of surgeons allowed to practice their profession in a locality. You can also validate the credentials by checking the National Practitioner Data Bank.
- Doctors who completed the 18 to 24 months certification offered by the American Board of Ophthalmology (ABO) are qualified to perform eye surgery. ABO is a non-profit organization in-charge of certifying eye physicians and surgeons in the US. These doctors remain in good standing with the ABO if they practice safely and efficiently. The certification offered by ABO is also recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties and the American Medical Association.
- Surgeons who use the post nominal title of “FACS” are members of the American College of Surgeons (ACS). All members of the ACS are board certified and maintains ethical standards of conduct.
Checking reviews and patient testimonials can help you gauge your options. They can give insight into how well the surgeon performs the surgery but should not be the only factor to consider. The best LASIK surgeon will have a high number of satisfied patients. However, you should also understand that the procedure may not work well with one person even if it worked well for another. Patients who undergo the surgery are each treated uniquely depending on the person’s case.
You may also want to ask some questions to your potential surgeon about his experience to help you decide if he is the best surgeon who can address your needs. Questions can be:
- How many LASIK eye surgeries have you performed?
- What is your success rate and how does it compare with the national average?
- How would you define a successful procedure?
- How many of your patients achieved 20/20 vision after the surgery?
- How many of your patients return for enhancements?
It is important that you choose the right surgeon, so if you are not satisfied with the answers, you should consult another one.
You may also find out what technology the surgeon uses when performing LASIK eye surgery. A surgeon who keeps up with the current technology and trend is a good doctor to consider. Know how long the surgeon has performed LASIK using these technologies. You are in good hands if the surgeon has complete knowledge and understanding of the eye procedure.
Getting a referral from someone you know who has had a positive experience with a LASIK surgeon can be a good basis for making the decision.
Optometrists or your eye doctor usually have connections with eye surgeons. They can provide you with the right information you need about which surgeon is the most qualified in their area. These recommendations from trusted people are all essentially useful in helping you decide.
Choosing the best surgeon with experience and skill does not mean that the LASIK surgery will be cheap. While it is imperative to check the background and credentials of your doctor, you should also consider the overall cost of the service. Pricing will be a major factor in making your decision. The surgeon, clinic, equipment, and even your geographic location will all contribute to the potential costs. It is best to take the time to know all of these costs before jumping into that decision. However, you should also be careful not to sacrifice the quality of the surgery just so you can save money.
It is also important to keep in mind the vision center staff when comparing surgeons. You should care to check if they are accommodating, approachable and really interested in helping you get that better vision.
The first impression you receive when you inquire may give you a taste of how you may feel during the rest of the scheduling stage and what you may experience when you already undergo the surgical procedure. If you feel that the staff are not competent enough, disorganized, or unfriendly, then it may be a sign for you that you should start considering another surgeon.
In order to achieve your vision correction goals, you have to put in the effort of finding the most qualified surgeon to do the procedure. The surgery can be a little bit intimidating, so your goal is to select a doctor who will manage your treatment with utmost care and professionalism. A doctor who can address your concerns and put you at ease will give you the long-term satisfaction you look for.