What is the laser eye surgery patient journey?

09 February 2023

Author: Kate Green

laser eye surgery treatment journey

How to get started with laser eye surgery


We know that a lot of uncertainty around whether to proceed with laser eye surgery occurs because people aren’t sure exactly what happens in the process. This can cause a bit of hesitancy – which is only natural when you’re considering such a life-changing treatment – and cause people to put off their treatment for months, or even years. Understanding what to expect in your laser eye surgery journey at Ultralase will help set your mind at ease and ensure you know what happens at each stage.


The first step is to do your research about different providers, which is possibly what you’re doing now if you’ve found yourself on our website! You can even visit a few different clinics to make sure you pick a provider you feel entirely comfortable with. You’ll want to consider a number of factors such as:

  • Location
  • Type of surgery available
  • Price range
  • Surgeon
  • Provider’s reputation
  • Aftercare options


When it comes to considering these factors at Ultralase, you should note that:


Book your free consultation

After you’ve decided you would like to visit Ultralase to start your treatment journey, you’ll need to book your consultation. You can do this online or by giving us a call on 0800 988 6390. Choose your nearest or most convenient of our 19 clinics to make your appointment in – and best of all, it’s a completely free appointment! We just ask for a small refundable deposit (£10 for a weekday, £30 for a weekend) which is simply designed to reduce non-attendance in our clinics. This is refunded to you as soon as you arrive for your appointment, regardless of whether you actually book your surgery with us.


Discover your laser eye surgery suitability

At the free consultation, we’ll perform a range checks and examinations to confirm that you’re suitable for laser eye surgery. We look at a number of things such as your eye dryness, corneal thickness, prescription, pupil size and more. Expect to be in the clinic for around 2 hours for your initial consultation which includes an appointment with an optometrist to discuss your options. If you are found to be unsuitable for laser eye surgery, there are other vision correction options you can consider like implantable contact lenses, refractive lens exchange, or even cataract surgery.


Schedule your laser eye surgery

If you are ready to proceed to your surgery, the next step is to book the dates. You can either do this at your consultation if you’re sure that you’re going ahead with treatment, or you can take some time to think about it at home, and then call or email your clinic later on to book your surgery. You will also book your surgeon assessment, which is an appointment that is carried out around a week before your surgery date. This is usually a video call with your surgeon so you can meet them prior to your treatment and ask any questions you may have. Your surgeon will have reviewed your file before this appointment to ensure that they are also happy to proceed, and that they believe the surgery is in your best interests. At this stage, you will also book your first check-up appointment which occurs either one day (after LASIK) or 3-5 days (after LASEK) following surgery.


Visit us for your surgery

Now, it’s time for the big day! This life-changing day is what you’ve been waiting for since you visited us for your first consultation – it’s time to correct your vision. You’ll receive plenty of information from your clinic beforehand about what to expect on surgery day, what to bring, and how you can prepare. You should expect to be in the clinic for around 4 hours as you will have preparatory talks with your patient advisor, read consent documentation thoroughly, and have final pre-surgery checks performed on your eyes. You shouldn’t make any other plans for this day as it’s important for you to rest your eyes and aid a speedy recovery at home.


First aftercare appointment

Your first aftercare check will take place either a day after surgery if you had LASIK, or 3-5 days after surgery if you had LASEK. At this appointment, your optometrist will check for signs of infection and ensure that your eye is healing as expected. After LASEK treatment, a bandage contact lens is fitted to protect your eye and help it heal (this doesn’t happen with LASIK treatments), so it is at your first check-up appointment that this will be removed.


Subsequent aftercare checks

Your next aftercare appointments will come 7-14 days after surgery, a month after surgery, and three months after surgery. Again, these appointments are simply to check that the optometrist is happy with your healing progress, and for you to raise any potential concerns or ask questions about your vision. If you would like additional appointments in this period before you are discharged, you are more than welcome to book yourself in. Our patient advisors are also just a phone call away if there’s anything that you want to ask them during your recovery period.


Discharge and on-going aftercare

After 3 months, if both you and your optometrist are satisfied with your vision and healing, you will be discharged from our care. If you would like to visit us in the months or years following your surgery, you can make a check-up appointment with us for a charge of £50 (to cover the optometrist’s time). However, if it is found that you need further treatment to restore good vision, we will provide your surgery free of charge as part of our Lifetime Aftercare Guarantee.


If you have any questions about starting your laser eye surgery journey, send us an email to enquiries@ultralase.com or call us on 0800 988 6390 where our Customer Advisors will be more than happy to assist you.

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