LASIK surgical errors

LASIK surgery is an elective surgery utilized for the correction of eye refractive errors (near and farsightedness, and astigmatism). LASIK is an acronym for Laser in situ Keratomileusis. An incision is made and a laser is used to reshape the cornea. The outcome when all goes well is the treatment of refractive errors and improved vision.

LASIK surgery does not always correct eye problems. The problem the surgery was performed to correct can come back. There can be lingering negative effects of the surgery that were not experienced pre-LASIK.

  • Minor drawbacks (occurring in around 20% of LASIK patients) include:
  • Halos -- Seeing rainbow-like, colored rings around lights or bright objects.
  • Starbursts -- Rays or fine filaments coming off lights. At night, these rays can become dramatically longer and denser. Starbursts are highly variable between patients, differing in terms of size and shape, length of rays, density of rays, and transparency (whether the light source is visible through the starburst).
  • Glare.
  • Night vision problems.
  • Double vision.
  • Sensitivity to light.
  • Dry eyes.
  • Continued need for glasses or contact lenses.

Major complications that can happen from Lasik surgery are:

  • Corneal Ectasia -- Thinner cornea, cut collagen support bands, and intraocular pressure work together to cause a bulging or failure of the cornea.
  • LASIK Flap Dislocation -- The incision made for the surgery will weaken the cornea. In some patients, it never heals.
  • Patients with dry eyes pre-surgery often find the problem far worse after LASIK surgery.
  • Infection can happen as an incision is being made in the cornea.
  • Epithelial Ingrowth -- Cells introduced during incision grow in patches in the cornea occluding vision. Subsequent surgeries to correct this problem usually make it worse. 
  • Pain.
  • Retinal detachment.
  • Blindness.

Contraindications, or reasons that make it inadvisable, for LASIK surgery are:

  • Keratoconus -- Corneal degeneration thought to be caused by collagen support protein breakdown.
  • Strong, often changing, or rapidly worsening focal problems.
  • Thin Corneas -- Either caused by keratoconus or another condition.
  • Prior corneal surgery.
  • Dry eyes.
  • Abnormal corneal curvature.
  • Participants in contact sports.

Negligence can occur by LASIK surgeons in the form of:

  • Recommending the surgery to people for whom the procedure is not recommended.
  • Recommending the surgery for something it will not fix.
  • Guaranteeing results or a prognosis.
  • Botched surgery due to incompetence, improper training, and/or experience.
  • Dirty or contaminated equipment and/or conditions.

If you believe you may have a surgical error medical malpractice case, it is important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible. The Sweeney Law Firm can review your case for free and take your case on a contingency fee basis. There is never a fee unless we make a recovery for you.