Frequently Asked Questions

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There are many questions that we get asked around laser and lens surgery. So much so, we've amalgamated them all in one place for your convenience.

Laser Eye Surgery

You may have many questions around laser eye treatment, so before you go ahead and book your free consultation, take a look at some frequently asked questions that you may have had.

Post surgery, you will not be able to see much difference to your eye compared to what it looked like before - specialised equipment will only be able to see the change! If you have undergone LASIK treatment, your eyes will look relatively normal, aside from some redness that comes with the procedure. In some cases, you may experience some red spotting, however this will disappear two to three weeks after treatment. If you have undergone LASEK treatment, your doctor will advise you on when it will be safe to remove the eye pad. Your treated eye may be slightly puffy or weepy, but this should ease after about 48 hours. You may notice that your pupils may look slightly enlarged when you have administered eye drops or ointment.
Once you have attended your aftercare appointments and the optometrist has assessed your eyes, you may resume all activities. If you have undergone LASIK treatment, you should avoid contact sports for at least three months. Please wear sunglasses for around one week after treatment and avoid dusty and dirty environments during the first seven days post treatment. If you have undergone LASEK treatment, please try to avoid harsh sunlight for at least four weeks if you are taking part in outdoor sports, because the UV light may create a haze..
We recommend that you avoid swimming for at least a month after your laser eye treatment. Water carries bacteria so we advise you not to submerge your head in the water to minimise the risk of infection whilst your eyes are still healing.
Please be prepared to be in the clinic for up to 4 hours on your treatment day, and up to 20 minutes in the treatment room. The laser is on your eyes for a mere 30 seconds, so it's over very quickly!
Laser eye surgery is one of the safest and one of the most commonly performed treatments in the UK. As for Ultralase, over 99% of our laser patients have achieved driving standard vision or better.
Contrary to popular belief, it is entirely possible to undergo laser eye surgery when you have an astigmatism. Although it does depend on the severity, and we would never allow you to go through with the surgery if we don't believe it will make a positive difference in your life. This will all be decided in your consultation.
Unless there is a particular medical reason as to why the eyes would need treatment at different times, both eyes will be treated during the same procedure. There are two different types of laser eye surgery that we offer: LASIK and LASEK. During the LASIK procedure, the surgeon will use one machine to create a flap and then swivel you to the second machine where the laser will correct your prescription. During the LASEK procedure, the surgeon will apply a solution to loosen the cells on your cornea, which are moved to one side and the laser is then applied to your eye. After this, the surgeon will apply a protective contact lens to help the eye heal.
The minimum age for laser eye surgery is 18, but this is still dependent on your prescription and the treatment you desire, so it could still be older. 18 is still quite young, and the eyes could change over a period, which is why we recommend waiting until your prescription is stable.
We recommend that you do not undergo treatment whilst pregnant or breastfeeding. Due to hormones, your prescription could well change, so we advise that you wait at least three months to go through with treatment once you have stopped breastfeeding.
We advise that you remove soft contact lenses up to 48 hours before treatment. Sleep in/toric lenses must be removed up to a week before, and hard/gas permeable lenses need to be removed up to three weeks before your surgery.
At Ultralase and Optimax, 98% of our patients achieve driving standard vision after treatment. This is 10/20 and described as reading the fifth line on the Snellen Chart. Our aim is to reach 20/20 or better for your vision, which is the seventh line of the Snellen Chart. For LASEK and LASIK, the final results for up to -6D, there is no difference. With long sight results, our patients have a 80% success for achieving driving standard.
It is completely normal for your eye drops to sting a little bit once you have administered them, but you do need to continue to use them as prescribed because they will help with healing and preventing infection. If the discomfort persists, however, please contact us.

Lens Surgery

From cataract treatment to IOL and ICL procedures, you may have many questions about what each surgery entails. Take a look below to learn more.

It's not possible for cataracts to spread from one eye to the other, but they can develop simultaneously in both eyes.
Cataracts are removed by a process called 'Phacomulsification', which is where a cataract is broken up by ultrasound, it is then liquified and suctioned out.
Unlike in laser eye treatment, bilateral treatment is not possible in cataract or lens replacement surgery. If you do need both eyes treated, we recommend that you get your eyes treated one at a time, with a minimum of a week apart (diary availability dependent). This is mainly done to avoid infection and for safety reasons.
The procedure is not painful! Like with our laser surgery treatments, we use local anaesthetic to ensure you do not feel anything.
Due to the dilating drops that are administered, and the bright lights, many patients find that their vision is blurred after surgery. This will clear up several hours after the operation, however you may find that your vision may be delicate for a few days post-treatment. It is advised that you bring a pair of sunglasses with you on the day of your treatment so ensure you're as comfortable as possible.
After surgery, your vision may be better without the aid of your glasses, but if you choose to wear your old glasses, this will not hurt your eyes. Often, you can choose to have a clear lens put in your frames, or you can opt for just reading glasses. We advise that you wait one month following the treatment before you get a new pair of glasses. You may still need reading glasses or bifocals for closer work if you do need an aid to see.
Dealing with complications with cataract surgery is very rare, however like with many things in life, eye surgery is not 100% risk free. Despite the number being low, risk of infection is around 1 in 5000 patients, but Ultralase ensure that the operating room is completely sterile, which is designed to minimise the risk of infection as much as possible. At every aftercare appointment, your eyes will be thoroughly checked for infection.
You will not need to stay overnight for this procedure, however you will need to be in the area for your aftercare appointment the following day. It would be best to stay in the vicinity because of this!
Your vision will have improved greatly in comparison to pre-surgery, but the optometrist will advise you to drive when you feel most comfortable and confident to do it.
Please avoid eye make up for at least two weeks after your surgery. You are OK to wear base make up and lipstick.
You may experience a grit-like, burning sensation in your eyes, like you may have something on the surface, and it may feel like something is scratching. This is completely normal, and due to the tiny incision that will have been made on the surface of your eye - this should disappear as your eyes heal. If the scratchiness does continue, it could be a sign of dry eye, and drops will help with this.
It is completely normal for your eye drops to sting a little bit once you have administered them, but you do need to continue to use them as prescribed because they will help with healing and preventing infection. If the discomfort persists, however, please contact us.
This will be due to the dilation of your eyes after surgery. Your vision will go back to normal when this has worn off!
This may be down to a number of reasons, but most commonly, it could be a refractive error, or in lamen's terms, need for glasses. Otherwise, it may just corneal swelling, and this is temporary.
The white part of your eye, which is called the sclera, is covered by a layer of tissue that is clear, called the 'conjunctiva'. When a small blood vessel breaks, this blood becomes trapped under the conjunctiva, and the reason you can see it is because it is clear. The same happens on other parts of your body like your arms or legs, when you bruise blue or purple, however it is not as noticeable because your skin is not transparent. You have no need to be worried, this will disappear eventually.

Please email us at enquiries@ultralase.com or call us on 0800 9888 6390 if you'd like more information.