There are a great many things we have to deal with as our bodies age. It’s harder to do a lot of the things we enjoyed when we were younger. But do you want to know the one thing you don’t have to worry about being too old for? LASIK eye surgery! If you’re tired of glasses or contacts and want to experience life with total visual freedom, it’s likely you still qualify for LASIK. Let’s take a look at a few of the requirements for LASIK, as they relate to age:
No Upper Age Limit
In general, the FDA recommends patients be a minimum of 18 years old in order to have LASIK surgery, but there is no upper limit on how old you can be. People in their 80s have received LASIK without any complications. That being said, not every person qualifies for LASIK surgery. Age does sometimes come with certain complications that can make getting LASIK difficult. Keep reading to find out more.
Certain medical conditions that are more common in older patients may bar you from getting LASIK. These include glaucoma, diabetes, and other autoimmune diseases. Issues with your physical health can hinder your ability to recover from surgery, and issues with your eye health can make surgery difficult and less effective. If you are generally in good health, however, there shouldn’t be anything stopping you from having LASIK.
It’s no surprise that older folks tend to take more medications than younger folks, and this usually doesn’t present a problem for eye surgeries. However, certain medications can interfere with your eye health. For instance, amiodarone, an antiarrhythmic, may have side effects that affect the patient’s vision and can be worsened by laser surgery, making it dangerous to have LASIK while taking it. When being evaluated for LASIK candidacy, you should always tell your doctor which medications you take and what they’re for.
Cataract Surgery and LASIK
Another common question related to age is whether or not you can get LASIK if you have cataracts. In general, LASIK is ineffective if cataracts are the primary cause of your vision problems. With cataract surgery, however, you can get a premium Intraocular Lens (IOL) that can correct your vision and help you see better both near and far away. If an IOL still doesn’t allow you to see perfectly, you may qualify for laser surgery to correct any remaining visual problems. This varies from person to person — only your eye doctor can decide what’s best for your eye health.