Common Complications of Eye Surgery
Eye surgery, also called ocular surgery, is a cosmetic surgery done on the eye itself or some of its adnexa, usually by an optometrist. The eye is such a delicate organ and needs extreme care prior, during, and even after a surgery. Complications from eye surgery can range from excessive dryness of the eye to loss of vision, both transient and permanent. This article will focus on only those complications that are more likely to occur than others, with a focus on the risks of eye surgery in children.
One of the complications of laser eye surgery is the loss of eyesight, commonly called blindness. It is actually one of the most common side effects of laser vision correction surgery for children. A child may end up losing about 200 to 400 total square feet of vision, or an average of ten degrees of vision at best. Fortunately, many children can regain their vision as they age, so it is rarely permanent. Most children that lose eyesight due to laser eye surgery also end up with a lazy eye, which means they have difficulty focusing on close objects or reading small print, and tend to have problems catching moving objects.
Another fairly common cause of complications is refractive error, which is described as having nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism. In general, nearsightedness makes the face look bigger, while farsightedness makes the face appear smaller. Some patients also have astigmatism, where light rays focus off the surface of the eye and cause blurred vision. Correcting refractive errors requires extensive medical education, so that optometrists are better able to diagnose and treat these cases. Lazy eye, or trifocals, are a relatively new complication of eye surgery, but have been found to be more problematic than farsightedness and nearsightedness.