Astigmatism

Astigmatism is a common eye condition (a.k.a. refractive error) that can cause distortion in sight. That’s the bad news. The good news is it’s easily corrected by eyeglasses or contact lenses. But if you are one of the millions of people who can’t wear contact lenses due to discomfort, and you’re tired of reaching for your glasses just to see your alarm clock in the morning, there is even better news: astigmatism can be permanently eradicated by laser vision correction surgery.

You may be surprised to learn that astigmatism occurs in nearly everybody to some degree; it is simply caused by a cornea that is not completely round. The cornea is the front part of the eye – the window of the eye. The cornea is naturally shaped like a sphere which refracts, or bends, incoming light evenly on the retina, creating a clear view of the world. However, the cornea of a person with astigmatism is shaped more like a football. The cornea of an eye with astigmatism refracts light more in one direction than the other, allowing only part of the object to be in focus at one time. Objects at any distance can appear blurry and wavy, and this problem may slowly worsen over time.

While the exact cause of astigmatism isn’t known, it occurs commonly from childhood onwards and can easily be diagnosed with a thorough eye exam. Astigmatism may occur with other vision problems such as nearsightedness and farsightedness, and it can be corrected at the same time as these common eye problems with properly prescribed glasses or contact lenses. But our laser eye surgeons at UELC are well-versed in restoring sight to people with astigmatism using more permanent methods: refractive lens exchange or laser eye surgery to change the shape of the cornea once and for all.

To correct astigmatism, our laser eye surgeons use advanced technology to even out the corneal curve, eliminating the astigmatism in the eye. The correction allows light rays to focus squarely onto the retina for clear vision. Patients who elect to have a LASIK procedure to correct astigmatism are surprised to find they have a better quality of vision after surgery than they did before with their high-prescription glasses and contact lenses.

Refractive surgeries are indicated for healthy eyes that are free from retinal problems, corneal scars, and eye disease. There are certain conditions that may prevent you from being an ideal candidate for vision correction surgery; if you do have any of these conditions, they will be revealed during your preoperative assessment and we can look at treatment options for these conditions prior to considering surgical correction of your astigmatism. We suggest that you disclose any pre-existing eye conditions that you may have with our eye care professionals.

Of course, it is important that you explore all the options and possibilities before deciding which refractive surgery or treatment is right for you. If you are ready to say goodbye to the squinting, blurred vision, eye strain and headaches, glasses and contacts caused by your astigmatism, our doctor will determine, based on your level of astigmatism, a customized vision solution to correct your vision problem. All you have to do is visit us for your free consultation!