LASIK And The Elderly

Lasik Elderly Who wants to see? Everybody. Today LASIK eye surgery is available for everyone, and older adults are more likely than ever to pursue refractive surgery rather than face declining eyesight.

A new study reported in the Journal of Ophthalmology recently noted that the safety and efficacy of LASIK procedures has increased significantly for patients to 70 years old. In the past, many doctors felt older patients were more likely to suffer increased safety issues or less stable results following LASIK procedures.

This new study however, suggests there is little difference in outcomes between patients in their 20s and 30s and those in their 40s and beyond. While LASIK usually is not performed in populations over 70, there are still opportunities for the elderly to participate in refractive surgeries and corneal replacement surgeries to help improve eyesight and their quality of life.

Newer technologies are also affording eye doctors more choices when it comes to treating older adults. Problems including astigmatism, hyperopia, and myopia are commonly improved by LASIK, IntraLase and other refractive surgeries, no matter the patient's age. If you do have concerns about LASIK and its safety for your age group, be sure you consult with a qualified physician, one that will help you weigh the risks and benefits of surgery.

For more information on medical and safety alerts for people of all ages, including alerts on LASIK surgeries, drugs and other procedures, be sure to visit the Department of Health and Human Services MedWatch page.

Eyesight And Aging
There is one fact that holds true for almost anyone. As you age, your eyesight declines. You may suffer from farsightedness as you age, or a condition called presbyopia. Some people find they must deal with cataracts as they age, or develop eye diseases including glaucoma.

Sometimes, it is possible to avoid these conditions with proper care and a healthy diet. Some problems result from underlying health conditions including diabetes. As you age, it is more important than ever that you visit with your eye doctor and your regular family physician for annual check-ups. The more attention you pay to your health, the more likely you are to remain healthy and see as best you can for as long as you can.

The good news is as you age, you still have the opportunity to correct your vision many ways. You can for example, enjoy the benefits of LASIK surgery, as mentioned above. Some people find as they age they prefer to use eyeglasses or even contacts to improve their eyesight.

Still others are willing to try eye exercises throughout their life to improve the quality of their vision from the time they are young until the time they grow old.

Some tips for improving your eyesight as you age include:

  • Get your eyes checked yearly to rule out disease and to maintain proper eyesight.
  • Keep your eyes healthy by practicing gentle exercises and eating well. A proper diet is just as important to your eyesight as exercise is.
  • Make sure you get a physical annually to rule out any underlying health conditions that may contribute to vision problems.
  • If you do seek LASIK surgery to correct vision problems, make sure you talk with your surgeon about the benefits and risks of surgery at your age. Make sure you feel fully informed of the advantages and disadvantages of surgery, as well as understand aftercare tips to follow when surgery is over.
  • If you have a family history of visual problems, make sure you let your doctor know as soon as possible. This will help them when screening for possible medical conditions that may affect your eyesight.
  • Make sure you protect your eyes from the sun, by wearing UV resistant eyeglasses anytime you are outdoors. Remember UV can penetrate the clouds even on hazy days. Over time, too much exposure to UV radiation can reduce the quality of your vision leading to problems.
Remember, as we age, the more we care for our bodies, the more likely we are to experience good vision. Good vision is as much a reflection of our lifestyle and habits as it is our eyes. Proper diet and exercise, as well as supplementation, can go a long way toward improving your vision and your health.

If you have questions about your vision, do not hesitate to talk with your doctor. Together the two of you can decide the best course of action to improve and maintain your eyesight.

For more information on eyesight and aging check out:

Are you in 65 and over and had Lasik surgery? Is your vision better? Tell us your story in the comments.

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