LASIK Alternatives: When LASIK is Not Right For You

LASIK Alternatives

LASIK corrective eye surgery might be the procedure that gets the most recognition, but these days there are a number of LASIK alternatives that should be considered depending on your specific needs. With changes in technology, individuals who were once told they were not candidates for a surgical correction may have better options. The experienced eye doctors at Vision Care Specialists conduct a thorough analysis of your unique vision and lifestyle needs with our LifeFitTM Approach before proposing any surgical solution. Below is a description of some of the more popular surgical options:


The most common type of corrective surgery, LASIK permanently changes the shape of the cornea to improve vision and reduce dependency on glasses or contacts. LASIK can correct for nearsightedness or farsightedness, but not all at the same time. Patients typically have to choose whether they want corrected vision close up or for distance or select a monovision option where one eye is corrected for distance and the other for reading.

Who: Individuals over 18 with healthy eyes and a relatively stable prescription that are looking to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism.
What: Surgeon creates a protective flap of corneal tissue which is lifted so that the laser can reshape the cornea underneath.
How: LASIK is a four- to the five-minute outpatient procedure and most patients can return to work the next day.

Implantable Contact Lenses (ICLs)

These thin, pliable lenses can be an alternative to LASIK surgery and are used to correct conditions that laser surgery may be unable to correct, such as extreme myopia (nearsightedness). 95% of patients report seeing as well as they did using corrective lenses before surgery and 40% can see even better.

Who: People over 21 who have moderate to severe nearsightedness or farsightedness and who are not candidates for laser eye surgery.
What: Lenses are surgically implanted in the eye in front of the natural lens and act similar to an external contact lens that sits atop the eye. ICL is sometimes considered safer than LASIK because it does not physically alter the cornea.
How: These permanent lenses bend light rays onto the retina to form a clear image.

Corneal Transplants

Thanks to the generosity of donors, more than 44,000 people benefit from corneal transplants each year.

Who: A person who has a damaged cornea and wants to restore vision, relieve pain or improve the appearance of the cornea.
What: A surgical procedure is known as penetrating keratoplasty (PK) to replace part of the cornea.
How: During this outpatient procedure, damaged tissue is replaced by with cornea tissue from a deceased donor.

Laser Cataract Surgery

Laser cataract surgery is the most advanced cataract surgery technique available today–it’s safer, more precise, gentler and results in better vision enhancement then traditional cataract procedures. Many patients are restored to 20/20 vision.

Who: Those suffering from cataracts; a consultation with our doctors is the first step to know if this procedure is right for you.
What: A laser makes precise incisions to remove the cloudy lens and replace it with a monofocal or multifocal lens.
How: The laser takes precise measurements and makes micro-incisions in the eye, then determines the exact refraction and custom fits the replacement lenses.

Vision Care Specialists Are Denver’s Vision Experts

No matter what vision correction you need, the first step is to discuss your options with the doctors at Vision Care Specialists to ensure the right solution for your lifestyle is considered. When you’re ready for your consultation, please call 303-991-9600 or contact us online.

What concerns do you have about corrective surgical eye procedures?