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There is no doubt that the introduction of LASIK (Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis) procedures was an unprecedented advancement in eye care, offering people an opportunity to have clearer vision without the inconvenience or the discomfort of glasses or contacts. LASIK has been able to correct refractive errors, including shortsightedness, long-sightedness or astigmatism, but despite the advances made in the eye surgery, LASIK injuries are sometimes suffered because of improper surgical techniques and negligent doctors.
Not everybody is a candidate for LASIK, and there are certain guidelines for ideal candidates that the eye surgeon must recognize for the safety of the patient. Failing to appropriately identify LASIK profiles can substantially increase the risks of LASIK injuries. One of the guidelines for LASIK candidates includes fully informing the patient about the surgery’s potential risks of LASIK injuries. Every patient should have undergone a comprehensive eye exam to ensure they are not at increased risks for LASIK injuries.
The exam should include a history of vision, including past eye diseases or injury, which could affect the outcome of the surgery. Ideal candidates have thick corneas, so the surgeon should first map out the cornea’s shape and thickness. A cornea that is too thin or has too few cells lining its back surface can seriously adversely affect vision, creating LASIK injuries. Irregularities in the cornea can also have dire outcomes if LASIK is performed, and the importance of accurately shaping measurements plays an important role in avoiding LASIK injuries since it will determine how much correction to attempt and where to aim the laser.
Some patients not considered “ideal” can still choose to voluntarily undergo the eye correction surgery, but they must understand the risks for LASIK injuries and consent to going ahead regardless. Surgeons that believe the risks of suffering LASIK injuries outweigh any potential benefits should communicate their concerns and not allow patients to go ahead if they are not confident with the procedure’s potential outcome. Before any decisions to go forward with LASIK are made, the doctor should have performed a thorough eye exam and discussed whether the individual patient is a good candidate, what the risks, benefits and alternatives of the surgery are, what to expect before, during and after surgery and what the patient’s responsibility will be before, during and after surgery.
The patient should be given the opportunity to discuss all concerns and ask any questions, as well as have ample time to think about the risks and benefits, leaf through any informational literature provided by the surgeon and be confident with any decision made prior to signing an informed consent form. Though the majority of surgeons have the best interests of the patient in mind, mistakes do occur and can result in LASIK injuries. The consequences of these LASIK injuries can be devastating, and the extensive damages are sometimes recoverable through legal action.
Identifying experienced doctors who are willing to spend time with each patient to discuss the procedure, as well as making sure the patient feels comfortable can reduce risks of LASIK injuries. Surgeons should also encourage long term care, including follow-up and management to make sure any possible LASIK injuries are identified early, thus reducing the potential for lasting effects. Millions of people have safely undergone LASIK, an FDA recognized procedure that is proven safe and effective. However, LASIK injuries do occur because of improper pre-operative screening, improper surgical technique, faulty medical equipment, inappropriate follow-up treatment and negligence.
With the increasing number of LASIK related errors, many disgruntled patients are turning to the courts for compensation. Hundreds of medical malpractice lawsuits have been filed, with some patients winning hundreds of thousands of dollars against negligent doctors and clinics. If you or a loved one suffered injuries after undergoing LASIK, please contact Oshman & Mirisola, LLP.
Call us today at 1-800-400-8182 to determine if you have claim, or contact us online for a free case evaluation. Our firm utilizes the contingency fee system, where we not only provide free consultations, but never charge a fee unless we are successful in obtaining a settlement or jury verdict on your behalf.
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