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Lasik - pros and cons ?



 
 
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  #1  
Old July 20th 03, 06:23 AM
Cyberchondriac
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Lasik - pros and cons ?

Hi all,

I didn't see any threads already discussing this subject, so I ask:
Does anyone know of any absolute pros or cons regarding Lasik vision
correction where stargazing is concerned ?
I am never happy when wearing my glasses, the eye relief just doesn't quite
cut it, even in eyepieces with good eye relief, partly because you still
don't have the benefit of the eyeguard cupping your socket and blocking
stray peripheral light.
Contacts don't work well for me either, because my eyes tend to be very dry,
even with the newer contacts and solutions designed to address that. I seem
okay at distant viewing with the contacts in (I'm nearsighted, diopter is
approx -3.25 L and -3.75 R), but if I try and read something or view
something up close, it blurs out, I can't focus. If I pop a contact out, of
course, I can read fine print and small things easily.. but distance viewing
is shot.
There are, of course, other reasons to wish for normal good eyesight, such
as being able to wake up in the middle of the night and focus without having
to feel around for eyeglasses, or being able to jump in a pool or lake and
go swimming without removing glasses, worrying about them getting wet (mine
smear really bad if wet and I try to clean them without soap - I have an
oily complexion), or, having to remove contacts .. basically, to swim
*confidently*, you wind up having to go without vision correction.. which
makes it impossible to swim confidently.
So, that brings me to Lasik, which as far as I know, is still the most
advanced and best method of surgical vision correction.
I do remember seeing something in this ng about a year ago however, that
stated that due to the corneal flap cut , or maybe the laser itself, it's a
baaad thing to do if you're an amateur astronomer.
Could somebody please expound on that, because I'm really thinking about
taking the plunge, and even though for me astronomy's only a part time
hobby, I'd hate to end it.

Thanks
CC


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  #2  
Old July 20th 03, 07:59 AM
Bob May
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Lasik - pros and cons ?

Don't do it. Lasik modifies the outer part of the lens so that you can see
better in the daytime. Unfortunately, this ends up destroying night vision
when the edges are unmasked by the iris.
Better to keep what you have and refocus the eyepiece to match your eyes.
Astigmatism can be corrected by the addition of a cylinder lens that you can
put on the end of the eyepiece - just get a lens from your optician with
only the cylinder part of your prescription and you can make a cover to go
over your eyepieces that will fix that problem. Also note that you need to
mark the cover so you know which way the cylinder goes.

--
Bob May
Losing weight is easy! If you ever want to lose weight, eat and drink less.
Works evevery time it is tried!


  #3  
Old July 20th 03, 01:05 PM
John Ford
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Lasik - pros and cons ?

A few years ago (1999 or 2000) there was an extensive thread on this subject
within SAA that you might still be able to find with a topic search. Most
notably, one or two eye care professionals who were also astronomers posted
some research data on optical performance of the eye before and after laser
surgery. As I recall, the post read as an optical test report and the
results were quite scary. Other than the various surgical scars and
after-effects that result in ghost reflections, floater-like symptoms, and
generally-worsened night vision, the degradation in strict optical
performance of the eye was such that for someone who still had
eye-glasses-correctable vision, there was much to lose and little to be
gained.
I was considering the procedure at the time, and I finally concluded that if
one was "legally blind", or afflicted in some way that was not correctable
by lenses or contacts, then the procedure is justified. Otherwise, I decided
that getting this procedure done for cosmetic or convenience reasons was
asking for trouble.
Your milage may vary.

John



"Cyberchondriac" wrote in message
...
Hi all,

I didn't see any threads already discussing this subject, so I ask:
Does anyone know of any absolute pros or cons regarding Lasik vision
correction where stargazing is concerned ?
I am never happy when wearing my glasses, the eye relief just doesn't

quite
cut it, even in eyepieces with good eye relief, partly because you still
don't have the benefit of the eyeguard cupping your socket and blocking
stray peripheral light.
Contacts don't work well for me either, because my eyes tend to be very

dry,
even with the newer contacts and solutions designed to address that. I

seem
okay at distant viewing with the contacts in (I'm nearsighted, diopter is
approx -3.25 L and -3.75 R), but if I try and read something or view
something up close, it blurs out, I can't focus. If I pop a contact out,

of
course, I can read fine print and small things easily.. but distance

viewing
is shot.
There are, of course, other reasons to wish for normal good eyesight, such
as being able to wake up in the middle of the night and focus without

having
to feel around for eyeglasses, or being able to jump in a pool or lake and
go swimming without removing glasses, worrying about them getting wet

(mine
smear really bad if wet and I try to clean them without soap - I have an
oily complexion), or, having to remove contacts .. basically, to swim
*confidently*, you wind up having to go without vision correction.. which
makes it impossible to swim confidently.
So, that brings me to Lasik, which as far as I know, is still the most
advanced and best method of surgical vision correction.
I do remember seeing something in this ng about a year ago however, that
stated that due to the corneal flap cut , or maybe the laser itself, it's

a
baaad thing to do if you're an amateur astronomer.
Could somebody please expound on that, because I'm really thinking about
taking the plunge, and even though for me astronomy's only a part time
hobby, I'd hate to end it.

Thanks
CC




  #4  
Old July 20th 03, 05:50 PM
Mike Jenkins
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Lasik - pros and cons ?

I had the Lasik procedure done about 2 1/2 years ago when I was 45 years
old. My problem was an astigmatism. I too had dry eyes from contacts and
hassled with glasses.

Now 2 1/2 years later, I can say it's the best thing I have ever done for
myself. My vision is 20-15 in one eye and 20-20 in the other. I have noticed
no drop in night vision performance, although I'm new to astronomy, and
really can't compare my "dark sky" vision to what it was before the
procedure. My night driving vision is better than before. Looking through
binoculars is better than ever.

My eyeglasses were bi-focals. As we get older, the muscles that help the
eye focus on close up seeing begin to weaken. Since I had the Lasik, I now
have to carry reading (cheaters) glasses everywhere I go. This is the only
problem, for me, that I find annoying. As far as I know, there is no
procedure to eliminate this problem.

I am still amazed at the things I notice with my new eyes. The detail in a
birds feathers, seeing all the way to the horizon while fishing on the
ocean, scanning the crowd at an Angels baseball game. Not having to ask a
friend if that woman across the room is attractive to name a few. If anybody
has any questions, feel free to email me.

Mike


"John Ford" wrote in message
...
A few years ago (1999 or 2000) there was an extensive thread on this

subject
within SAA that you might still be able to find with a topic search. Most
notably, one or two eye care professionals who were also astronomers

posted
some research data on optical performance of the eye before and after

laser
surgery. As I recall, the post read as an optical test report and the
results were quite scary. Other than the various surgical scars and
after-effects that result in ghost reflections, floater-like symptoms, and
generally-worsened night vision, the degradation in strict optical
performance of the eye was such that for someone who still had
eye-glasses-correctable vision, there was much to lose and little to be
gained.
I was considering the procedure at the time, and I finally concluded that

if
one was "legally blind", or afflicted in some way that was not correctable
by lenses or contacts, then the procedure is justified. Otherwise, I

decided
that getting this procedure done for cosmetic or convenience reasons was
asking for trouble.
Your milage may vary.

John



"Cyberchondriac" wrote in message
...
Hi all,

I didn't see any threads already discussing this subject, so I ask:
Does anyone know of any absolute pros or cons regarding Lasik vision
correction where stargazing is concerned ?
I am never happy when wearing my glasses, the eye relief just doesn't

quite
cut it, even in eyepieces with good eye relief, partly because you still
don't have the benefit of the eyeguard cupping your socket and blocking
stray peripheral light.
Contacts don't work well for me either, because my eyes tend to be very

dry,
even with the newer contacts and solutions designed to address that. I

seem
okay at distant viewing with the contacts in (I'm nearsighted, diopter

is
approx -3.25 L and -3.75 R), but if I try and read something or view
something up close, it blurs out, I can't focus. If I pop a contact

out,
of
course, I can read fine print and small things easily.. but distance

viewing
is shot.
There are, of course, other reasons to wish for normal good eyesight,

such
as being able to wake up in the middle of the night and focus without

having
to feel around for eyeglasses, or being able to jump in a pool or lake

and
go swimming without removing glasses, worrying about them getting wet

(mine
smear really bad if wet and I try to clean them without soap - I have an
oily complexion), or, having to remove contacts .. basically, to swim
*confidently*, you wind up having to go without vision correction..

which
makes it impossible to swim confidently.
So, that brings me to Lasik, which as far as I know, is still the most
advanced and best method of surgical vision correction.
I do remember seeing something in this ng about a year ago however, that
stated that due to the corneal flap cut , or maybe the laser itself,

it's
a
baaad thing to do if you're an amateur astronomer.
Could somebody please expound on that, because I'm really thinking about
taking the plunge, and even though for me astronomy's only a part time
hobby, I'd hate to end it.

Thanks
CC







  #5  
Old July 20th 03, 06:45 PM
Scribe2b
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Lasik - pros and cons ?

my optometrist has LAZIK ads on his walls.
and he wear glasses
jc
  #6  
Old July 20th 03, 07:07 PM
Steve
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Lasik - pros and cons ?

Mike Jenkins wrote:

My eyeglasses were bi-focals. As we get older, the muscles that help the
eye focus on close up seeing begin to weaken. Since I had the Lasik, I now
have to carry reading (cheaters) glasses everywhere I go. This is the only
problem, for me, that I find annoying. As far as I know, there is no
procedure to eliminate this problem.


Has anyone seen the new procedure that tightens up the cilliary
ligaments that pull the lens, and restore your adaptation ?

Steve

  #7  
Old July 20th 03, 07:37 PM
Tom T.
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Lasik - pros and cons ?


I had Lasik done myself about 4 years ago. I'm 20-13 in one eye and
20-15 in the other. Before the surgery I was 20/400. Basically blind
as a bat without contacts or glasses, and was getting to the point
where my dr advised me that I would not be able to wear contacts for
many more years. Beacuse of the corrected area (just over 5mm) and
my age at the time ~30) I did loose a little off my naked eye limiting
magnitude. However - my views through the scope are completely
unaffected. And as I grow older, I'm loosing a bit anyway.

I should state that I am an avid amateur astronomer. In the past 6
days, I've been out 5 times. Basically I'm out every clear night. Not
having to fuss with glasses or contacts is a wonder beyond belief.

There is a lot of misinformation floating around about Lasik, and yes
it can be a bit of a gamble (there are lots of things that can go
wrong) but in retrospect it was one of the best things I ever did for
myself.

However, it is a rather drastic solution to a problem that in most
cases has a very simple solution. The sucecss rate is very high, but
that's little consolation if you are in the 2% with complications. Be
sure to check with a qualified health care professional or two and see
what they say.

Tom T.



  #8  
Old July 20th 03, 09:23 PM
Axel
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Lasik - pros and cons ?

I didn't see any threads already discussing this subject, so I ask:
Does anyone know of any absolute pros or cons regarding Lasik vision
correction where stargazing is concerned ?


I'm not sure if the surgery has improved, but it used to be that
they'd only correct part of the lens. At night your pupil would open
up enough to allow the uncorrected part of the lens to be exposed.
Thus a lot of people would get a mixture of corrected and uncorrected
vision, causing halos and other artifacts around bright point sources.
Most of the people I know who had this done are quite pleased with
the results (even though a couple of them mentioned halos etc.), but
they're not astronomers! Since proper night vision is so important to
this hobby, I wouldn't risk it if I were you.

Ritesh
  #9  
Old July 20th 03, 10:58 PM
Cyberchondriac
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Lasik - pros and cons ?

"John Ford" wrote in message
...
A few years ago (1999 or 2000) there was an extensive thread on this

subject
within SAA that you might still be able to find with a topic search. Most
notably, one or two eye care professionals who were also astronomers

posted
some research data on optical performance of the eye before and after

laser
surgery. As I recall, the post read as an optical test report and the
results were quite scary. Other than the various surgical scars and
after-effects that result in ghost reflections, floater-like symptoms, and
generally-worsened night vision, the degradation in strict optical
performance of the eye was such that for someone who still had
eye-glasses-correctable vision, there was much to lose and little to be
gained.
I was considering the procedure at the time, and I finally concluded that

if
one was "legally blind", or afflicted in some way that was not correctable
by lenses or contacts, then the procedure is justified. Otherwise, I

decided
that getting this procedure done for cosmetic or convenience reasons was
asking for trouble.
Your milage may vary.

John


I'm wondering, in all fairness and objectivity, if the studies were done at
least 6 months after the operation, in which time, reportedly, many of those
symptoms lessen greatly or even go away altogether. 3 people at my
workplace have had it done; 2 of them are estastic about their decision,
and after a year or more, remain so. The 3rd guy was something of a horror
story, but listening to him at length, I couldn't help but wonder if he
really did any research about who he decided to have the procedure done by.
None of them, however, are amateur astronomers. They're mostly computer
professionals.


  #10  
Old July 20th 03, 11:17 PM
Chris L Peterson
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Lasik - pros and cons ?

On Sun, 20 Jul 2003 21:58:06 GMT, "Cyberchondriac" wrote:

I'm wondering, in all fairness and objectivity, if the studies were done at
least 6 months after the operation, in which time, reportedly, many of those
symptoms lessen greatly or even go away altogether. 3 people at my
workplace have had it done; 2 of them are estastic about their decision,
and after a year or more, remain so. The 3rd guy was something of a horror
story, but listening to him at length, I couldn't help but wonder if he
really did any research about who he decided to have the procedure done by.
None of them, however, are amateur astronomers. They're mostly computer
professionals.


The great majority of those who have the procedure are quite satisfied with the
results. The complication rate is very low and there is no evidence of long term
problems (although the procedure is not all that old, so that's not surprising.)

The problem for visual astronomers is that the corrected area of the cornea is
usually smaller than the fully dilated pupil. This means that there may be a lot
of aberration when viewing with a fairly large exit pupil. Depending on corneal
thickness, however, it may be possible to correct a larger area, which would
make the procedure much more reasonable for visual astronomers.

_________________________________________________

Chris L Peterson
Cloudbait Observatory
http://www.cloudbait.com
 




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