My husband went in for his Lasik procedure last week Thursday morning. It is now Monday morning and his vision is worse than pre-procedure, is blurry, and he and he's seeing double. Thankfully, no pain is associated with this, no headaches, and his eyes are only minorly red.

We are being told by LasikPlus in Lakewood, CO with Dr. Howard Straub that this poor vision is only because of his dry eyes. But, drops do not improve his visual acuity at all and he has been using them religiously in addition to a topical antibiotic for the eyes. Also, when he went in for his post-op checkup the following morning, they referenced a visual eye chart and told him that he had improved from 20/200 to 20/50 and that it was good news. His vision was never 20/200 in either eye. The bad news was that he had more inflammation than they "like to see". They told him to go home, increase usage of antibiotic drops and lubricant drops and return in six days for follow up.

We are seeing them again this morning because I forced an earlier appointment than what they recommended and am looking for them to rule out other post op complications and not just send us along with duct plugs. If anyone else has an experience like this, what else can we keep in mind when communicating with them? How likely is it that a dry eye situation would decrease one's vision to the point of not being able to see neither near nor far and have zero improvement even after the eye was fully lubricated? When do they know it can tell that the surgery needs to be repeated?

I just have a lot of concern about the situation without the full knowledge of eye health to back me up!

...writing on behalf of my husband because he can't see the screen quite well enough to type this.

Thank you!

Original Post

I'm so sorry your husband is going through this. Dry eye can affect vision, but not to the degree you describe. If it were only dry eye, putting drops in would temporarily clear up his vision at least a little. Inflammation can also affect vision, so I'm not sure, if they saw it, why they did not prescribe an anti-inflammatory drop.

Dr Harzok may be able to offer you further information.

Thank you both so much for the initial reply.

We returned to the LasikPlus center this morning given my concerns and were initially told, again, that it was likely the dry eyes that were causing it. This was told to us by a tech, however, who did not do any exams. He was then seen by one of the center's ophthalmologists (who did not perform the surgery) and was told:

- the post lasik surgery decreased vision is being caused by "devitalized epithelial cells" that are external to the flap and obscuring vision (and ruled out epithelial ingrowth)

- that this was a "common side effect, I don't want to say complication" of the procedure

- and then later stated that there was little research on this complication given that it was rare and that in his 20 years he had only seen about 100 cases

- and followed with the assertion that it "always" heals itself by turning over the epithelial cells over a period of 2-10 weeks and that time is our best option

We are getting a second opinion on Thursday just to be safe. I will continue to research epithelial cells overlying the cornea, but I do wonder what one does besides PRK as those outcomes seem equally problematic.


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