Eye surgery, which is performed by an opthalmologist, is becoming an increasingly popular private health procedure. There are various types of eye surgery and treatments, which are carried out for both cosmetic and vision-related reasons. In this article we will look at some of the most popular treatments and explain what the process involves. Some of these treatments are available both through the NHS and privately.
The most popular current eye surgery is laser eye surgery, which is designed to improve vision. There are two popular methods, Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis (Lasik) and Photorefractive (PRK) eye surgery. The surgery can treat short sightedness (myopia) long sightedness (hyperopia) and defects in the curvature of the cornea, which is causing blurred vision (astigmatism). Lasik eye surgery involves the removal of a flap of the cornea’s tissue by the use of a laser. The cornea is then remodelled to alter its focus. For people who have a thinner cornea, where the creation of a flap may not be possible, PRK is often the preferred procedure. The procedures are both relatively short and patients report long-lasting benefits. In addition, the surgery removes the need for the patient to spend money on glasses and/or contact lenses, possibly for many years. This can easily pay for the cost of the surgery over a relatively short period of time.
Glaucoma is a condition that raises the pressure inside the eye, causing deterioration in vision over a period of time. Either through laser surgery or conventional surgery, the pressure inside the eye is reduced by the creation of a channel to allow fluid to drain from the eye more efficiently. It should be stressed that this type of surgery cannot correct the damage that has been caused to the eyesight. It can, however, prevent the damage from becoming worse. Subject to there being no other factors that contra-indicate it, glaucoma surgery can be carried out repeatedly, which is sometimes necessary for those for whom medication does not reduce the pressure within the eye. Glaucoma surgery can be available on the NHS.
As the age of the community increases, so does the incidence of cataracts. A large proportion of people over the age of sixty suffer from cataracts, resulting in vision loss. Sometimes the loss can be so significant that it has an adverse effect on an individual’s ability to live a normal life. Cataract surgery is not indicated if the individual has other eye illnesses. There are various types of cataract surgery but the basic process, which is relatively short, involves the replacement of the lens of the eye with an artificial replacement with a view to improving the patient’s vision. Cataract surgery may also be available on the NHS.
Corneal Transplant Surgery
Corneal Transplant Surgery, also known as Corneal Grafting Surgery involves, as its name suggests, the removal of a damaged cornea and its partial or total replacement with a graft that has been donated by a deceased person. It tends to be the procedure of last resort, after medication and less extensive surgical interventions have been tried and failed. The treatment, which can be carried out on the NHS is often undertaken on an out-patient basis.
Eyelid surgery, which is technically known as oculoplastic surgery, is surgery around the eyelids and the surrounding head and facial area. The surgery is primarily to correct any abnormalities in the skin, such as cysts and other growths, drooping eyelids and the staring appearance caused by thyroid eye disease. Eyelid surgery is often carried out for purely cosmetic reasons, to improve the appearance of the eyelids and surrounding facial tissue.
VR surgery is directed towards curing or improving problems in the vitreous and retinal areas of the eye. There are many types of VR surgery, the most common of which are to treat vision loss caused by macular degeneration, torn and detached retinas, diabetic retinopathy, trauma to the eye, inflammatory conditions, inherited disorders and infections. Some of this wide range of surgeries are likely to be available on the NHS.
Eye Muscle Surgery
The extraocular muscles are connected, through tendons to the outer protective covering of the eyeball at one end and to the eye socket at the other. These muscles let the eyes move right and left and up and down. Normally, these movements are synchronised but if they become misaligned it can result in exotropia, where the misalignment is outward pointing or esotropia where it is inward pointing. Exotropia is the more common of the two. Either way, the vision is impaired, with double-vision being the predominant condition. This impairment can be resolved by eye muscle surgery to add strength to or weaken or relocate the offending muscles, thereby putting the eyes back into a correct alignment.
As can be seen from this short article, there are many forms of eye surgery. Many of these are available on the NHS. For those that or not, or for those patients who would rather be treated privately, there are many private clinics that will provide the surgery that is required speedily and effectively.