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Refractive Surgery (laser eye surgery): Review of the Procedures from A->Z

Refractive surgery (laser eye surgery) is the most commonly performed eye surgery to treat myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness) and astigmatism, helping people with refractive errors get the best vision without having to wear glasses. So what is refractive surgery? How does the treatment work? Please refer to the article below for details.
Laser eye surgery brings a better vision

1. What is laser eye surgery?

The laser eye surgery reshapes the cornea to enable light entering the eye to be properly focused onto the retina for clearer vision.

Phakic IOL surgery places clear implantable lenses either directly in front of the iris (the colored portion of your eye) or just behind it, without removing your eye’s natural lens. Phakic lenses enable light to focus properly on the retina for clearer vision without corrective eyewear.

  • Pros: Refractive surgery is currently the only method to completely treat myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism. This method of treatment is painless, has a fast treatment time, and helps patients get rid of the disadvantages of wearing glasses.
  • Cons: Within 3 - 6 months after refractive surgery, some symptoms appear to the eyes such as dryness, sensitiveness and the eyes need good care.

If you need an eye exam, make an appointment with our doctor, who will be able to tell you if you're a good candidate for refractive surgery.

Operation room in Hanoi Eye Hospital 2

1.1. Surgical methods

Currently, there are many effective and safe refractive surgical methods that are commonly applied depending on the eye conditions of different patients, specifically as follows:

  • LASIK procedure.
  • Femtosecond laser procedure – Bladeless LASIK Surgery
    SMILE procedure.
  • Intraocular interventional surgery - Phakic IOL.
  • Presbyond surgery for people with near/far-sightedness and presbyopia.
Better vision with comfort after the surgery
Better vision with comfort after the surgery

Each methods is suitable for different eye conditions of patients.

1.2. Cost of surgery

How much does refractive surgery cost is something that many patients wonder. The cost for a refractive surgery will range from 20 to 70 million VND. This price will depend mainly on the surgical method and some other factors such as:

  • Additional eye procedure such as Crosslinking.
  • Patient's eye condition.
  • The cost of surgery at each hospital is different.

1.3.  Are you a candidate for refractive surgery?

Refractive surgery, although effective, can not be performed in all cases. People with near/far-sightedness need to meet the following surgical conditions:

  • Myopia: The most suitable myopia for surgery ranges from - 4.00 to - 10.00 D, prescription does not change more than 0.75 Diop within 1 year.
  • Age: Preferably from 18 to 40 years old.
  • Corneal thickness: The cornea needs to reach the most appropriate thickness.
  • Other conditions: No other eye disease, normal corneal shape, no autoimmune disease, not pregnant and breastfeeding.

1.4. How long does the surgery take? How effective?

Eye surgery takes place very quickly, usually 5-10 minutes for an operation, in which the actual time to shoot laser eye surgery is only about 1 minute / eye.

Refrative surgery is highly efficient in eradicating myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism. In some cases, mypopia might return, but the rate is very low.

The surgery takes only a few minutes

2. Myopia treatment and surgery procedure

Step 1: Preoperative screening (eye health, presciptions, corneal thickness, ...)

You need a thorough examination at the hospital  to see whether your eye conditions are qualified for the surgery. You must have stable vision over at least the past year, otherwise, you need to take care of your eyes until it is stable then you can have refractive surgery.

Screening time takes 1-2 hours, so you need to go to the hospital early.

When you go to the hospital, you need to bring the following documents:

  • Identity card (citizen identity card or passport).
  • Health insurance card, private insurance card (if any).
  • Coupon or voucher (if any).
Examination to make sure the eyes are qualified for the surgery

If you are a candidate for laser eye surgery, doctor will consult the suitable surgical methods for you to choose. The doctor will give some advice on what to do and answer the question "What should be avoided in laser eye surgery?" so that the patient can best prepare for surgery.

Consulting the right methods

Step 2: Performing the surgery

On the day of the surgery, the patient needs to go with carer and be 30 minutes earlier than scheduled to stabilize their psychology and prepare for the pre-opt checks (blood pressure measurement, blood collection, etc. for HIV and hepatitis B testing).


Surgery is performed very quickly, only about 10 minutes. The patient will be fully awake during the surgery, so it is necessary to be comfortable, lie still, look straight ahead and coordinate with the surgeon's instructions for a successful operation.

The surgery takes only a few minutes, is precise and safe

Step 3: Postoperative care

After the surgery, the patient will be transferred to the room to rest, then re-examined and will be discharged the same day. The patient may experience some discomfort in their eyes, but these symptom will go away quickly. The home eye care process will determine the time and condition of the eye's vision recovery.

Patient wears protective goggles after surgery

Therefore, after surgery, you should spend a lot of time resting your eyes, avoid working immediately, protect your eyes well and follow the doctor's instructions, have follow-up eyecheck as schedule for the best recovery.

Better vision immediately after the surgery

3. Misconceptions about laser eye surgery

Although myopia surgery is very popular, not everyone understands exactly about this method of treating myopia. Let's take a closer look at the myths about myopia surgery as follows:

3.1. The higher the prescription, the more expensive the surgery

This is the wrong view. The presciption and the cost of myopia surgery are completely unrelated to each other.

The cost of the surgery depends on the surgical method. The more modern method with outstanding advantages comes with higher price.

3.2. Myopic regression in few years after the surgery

This view is not entirely correct. The current methods laser eye surgery are proven to be safe and highly effective, but there is still a 5% risk of myopic regrression after surgery.

Those with a high chance of myopic regression are the ones who are under 18 years old when having the surgery. Having refractive surgery when the prescription is not stable, not taking care of the eyes after surgery causing the eyes to recover poorly, etc. are the reasons to myopic regression.

Guidlines about postoperative care to maintain good eye health

3.3. 10/10 vision after the surgery

This is not entirely correct. The visual acuity of the eye after surgery depends on the aided vision before surgery which is the vision you achieve with your spectacles or contact lenses on.

If you have 10/10 aided  vision, after surgery, maximum visual acuity will be achieved. On the contrary, if you can achieve only 7/10 or 8/10 aided vision, then you will not be able to achieve 10/10 vision after the surgery.

The reason is that patients have eye diseases or amblyopia together with myopia, which cannot be treated by refractive surgery.

4. Top eye surgery and laser centers in Hanoi

Currently, there are many eye care centers in Hanoi, but not all of them meet the safety and quality standards. Hanoi Eye Hospital 2 is proudly a prestigious, safe and qualified eye hospital. Since 2018, Hanoi Eye Hospital 2 applies the hospital quality and risk management system according to Haute Autorité de Santé (HAS) standards of the French Republic, a country whose medical background is recognized Top 1 in the world by the World Health Organization.

Địa chỉ uy tín về phẫu thuật khúc xạ tại Hà Nội - Mắt Hà Nội 2

At Hanoi Eye Hospital 2, synchronous and modern equipment is always updated, ensuring international standards. The advanced machinery system will support doctors in reducing invasiveness and complications after surgery. This is also the place where foreign ophthalmologists train and consult.

We welcome any questions you may have, and invite you to book a free laser assessment.



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