Laser eye surgery
Lasik and other refractive procedures
Duke refractive surgery specialists correct your vision to 20/20 or better using Lasik and other refractive procedures. Collectively, our surgeons have performed more than 20,000 procedures since the nationally ranked Duke Eye Center began offering refractive procedures nearly 20 years ago. We correct nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia) and astigmatism — blurry vision due to a misshaped cornea. Our experience treating complex eye diseases allows us to maximize the safety of your refractive procedure. Our goal is to return you to 20/20 vision or better with minimal discomfort and maximum convenience.
Experts in laser eye surgery
You may consider laser eye surgery if you no longer want to wear glasses or contact lenses. During the procedure, our eye surgeons use one of our highly precise lasers to reshape and sculpt the surface of your cornea. This changes its focusing power, and corrects nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. Our vast experience and regular use of the most advanced technology ensures you achieve better vision with reduced risk of halo and glare, which has been associated with some refractive procedures.
Our eye surgeons are board certified ophthalmologists who are also fellowship trained, which means they have completed several years of advanced training in cornea and refractive surgery. Our depth of knowledge ensures we recommend the laser eye surgery that is best and safest for you. We conduct a thorough evaluation to determine if you are a good candidate for Lasik, PRK, or another refractive procedure. The initial evaluation is free to all people interested in vision correction surgery. We address your needs and give you the best vision possible.
Choose Duke for your laser eye surgery because we offer:
- Top-ranked care. U.S News & World Report consistently ranks Duke among the nation's best eye centers.
- Continuity of care. Our doctors work with you from the time of your first evaluation, through all your follow up visits. Or if you prefer, we can also coordinate follow up care with your local eye doctor.
- Free evaluations. We use the latest diagnostic technology to conduct comprehensive evaluations to determine which refractive procedure is right for you. We discuss your options, payment considerations, and any concerns you may have to help you make a treatment decision.
- Refractive procedures. If you are not a candidate for Lasik, we offer a variety of refractive procedures. If you have keratoconus or cataracts, our surgeons help you understand your options, and achieve the best possible vision.
- Nationally recognized leaders. Our eye surgeons travel the country to lecture and teach courses on refractive procedures. We offer training courses for trainees and community doctors, and provide laser certification courses. Our vast experience and knowledge means you receive your care from some of the best refractive eye specialists in the country.
- Modern laser facilities. We use the latest laser system technology, including the bladeless femtosecond laser and custom Lasik, which uses a computer-generated 3-D mapping system to personalized your procedure. Our lasers are housed in our temperature and humidity controlled operating rooms, which increase the laser’s precise movements so you experience the best possible outcome.
LASER EYE SURGERY
Refractive procedures are performed in an outpatient setting with minimal to no pain. Within minutes of finishing the procedure you may go home with sunglasses or protective eye shields. You should be able to return to your normal activities within days. Your vision will improve as your eyes heal.
A thin, hinged flap is created in the cornea using a femtosecond laser (“bladeless Lasik”). The flap is hinged back, and laser energy reshapes the cornea to obtain the appropriate vision correction. The flap is then placed back into position.
Instead of making the flap created in Lasik, the laser energy is used to reshape the corneal surface to achieve optimal vision correction. The corneal surface regenerates within a few days. Photoreactive keratectomy (PRK) may be appropriate if your cornea is too thin for Lasik.
Clear, implantable lenses are surgically placed behind your iris to correct severe nearsightedness.
Your natural lens is surgically removed with ultrasound energy, and then replaced with an artificial intraocular lens (IOL). Multifocal intraocular lenses can be used to eliminate your need for glasses.
Small, circular, corneal rings called Intacs are surgically implanted in the eye to correct irregular-shaped corneas and improve vision impaired by keratoconus.
LASER EYE SURGERY
We offer free comprehensive evaluations to determine which vision correction surgery will work best for you. Our evaluations include a thorough examination of your eyes and their structures. We use sophisticated imaging devices to take precise measurements to achieve optimal vision correction. The following tests may be part of your evaluation.
Magnified, 3-D examination of the ocular structures.
A computer-guided device creates a 3-D image map of the cornea to measure corneal power, curvature, and thickness.
Ultrasound waves measure the thickness of the cornea.
Measures the curvature of the cornea’s front surface to assess astigmatism.
On the day of surgery, a computer-generated 3-D map of your eyes identifies the microscopic characteristics of your eye responsible for your nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism. The information is fed directly into the laser to customize your procedure and ensure we achieve optimal vision correction.