Results from a three-year longitudinal survey comparing data on visual satisfaction from LASIK patients and contact lens wearers were recently published by Ophthalmology medical journal. As research continues to support the safety and efficacy of laser vision correction, this study was the first to assess how a patient’s method of vision correction affected their visual satisfaction and perceived outcomes over time. In other words, are LASIK patients happy with their vision? And more importantly, how does that compare to those who opt to remain in contact lenses?
A total of 1,800 subjects enrolled in the study at 20 sites across the United States:
- 694 (39%) formed the control group, continuing contact lens wear
- 818 (45%) wore contacts before having LASIK
- 287 (16%) wore glasses before having LASIK
In a series of surveys taken at baseline (pre-operatively for those who had LASIK) and then again at the 1-year, 2-year, and 3-year mark, participants reported on their level of satisfaction with their vision and their experience with visual symptoms such as halo and glare, dry-eye, and ease of night driving.
Results: LASIK patients more satisfied with vision than contact lens wearers
Compared to patients who continued wearing contacts, modern LASIK technology proved to significantly reduce:
- Nighttime visual disturbances such as starbursts or haloes
- Difficulties with night driving
- Self-reported rates of eye infections, ulcers, and abrasions
The study also measured overall satisfaction with vision correction over time. Notably, the proportion of contact lens wearers expressing strong satisfaction with their current vision correction decreased from 63% at baseline to 54% at year 3, whereas the proportions of former contact lens and glasses wearers who expressed strong satisfaction with their current vision correction after LASIK increased to 88% and 77% respectively.
“We are thrilled to see the clinical results support what we have been seeing in our practice for years – LASIK is not only a safe alternative to glasses and contacts, it also delivers better outcomes and patient satisfaction,” said Dr. Jason Stahl, Durrie Vision refractive surgeon.