Ans. No. LASIK only treats distant (far) powers. I know that you have must have read some information on LASIK, however, specific to the age of over 40 years, there are some age related issues such as presbyopia. LASIK will be advised to you not just from the examination findings, but also after understanding your lifestyle. As it is an elective procedure, its benefits should outweigh the down-side for you. Many do choose LASIK in spite of being over 40 + years of age, but most of them are the kind who are willing to accept reading glasses and have considerable benefit in getting rid of their distant numbers.
About Presbyopia and LASIK
At the age of 40 to 50 years, everyone starts having change in his or her optics due to an age related phenomenon. After 40 years, we all need to use reading glasses. In older people who have not had LASIK done and still need to use numbers for distant work, these are then used as ‘Bi focals’ or ‘verifocals’. Reading glasses are an age related issue and no one is exempt from it.
It is called ‘Presbyopia’. There is no permanent treatment by laser for this, although some doctors advertise ‘presbyopic LASIK’, which is a laser treatment needing to be repeated every 1 or 1.5 years and is unsuccessful, hence not advocated by Dr Anand Shroff, our LASIK expert and Corneal surgeon.
There are few who opt for Monovision. However, these are people who have been used to ‘monovision’ with contact lenses. Those who want to try this out are encouraged to use contact lenses for a short period to see if the monovision helps or suits them.
With LASIK, we could help you for distant numbers (your Myopia and Astigmatism) by correcting them off completely which would then leave you with reading numbers alone. Hence, you have to let us know if you are willing to accept these reading powers?
Also, there is a possibility that you may require a cataract procedure in the near future, and then LASIK would have benefitted you only till that time. Due to the above, many in their 50′s choose lens exchange as an option which addresses not only the presbyopia, and distant powers, but also addresses a possible cataract in future. This is called clear lens exchange, however advised for those close to 50’s.