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The LASIK procedure.
Before, on the day, and after surgery

After Surgery

When can I start diving again?

You are only allowed to drive once you have adequate vision in your eye(s) – which should be one day after the LASIK procedure.Die Teilnahme am Straßenverkehr ist erst wieder möglich, sobald das Sehvermögen auf dem behandelten Auge ausreichend ist - normalerweise bereits am Tag nach der LASIK.

Can I wear my glasses or contact lenses after surgery?

Surgical correction of visual defects to exactly 0.0 dpt. is rare even, under strict test conditions. Whether you “need” a pair of glasses after surgery mainly depends on the demands on your eyesight. Your new vision will normally be adequate for the demands of your daily life. In special circumstances, such as driving at night, you certainly can wear glasses.


Short-sighted patients may have almost completely normal vision (“20/20” vision) after surgery. Like others with normal vision you most likely will need reading glasses from the age of 45 due to the normal onset of presbyopia. Contact lenses can be worn to correct a potentially remaining refractive error after surgery. Initially, however, there may be some irritation or the daily wearing time has to be reduced, due to changes in the tear film. You are only allowed to drive once you have adequate vision in your eye(s) – which should be one day after the LASIK procedure.

On the day of Surgery

Please be on time, i.e. arrive at the LZW at least 15 minutes before your appointment. You can request a sedative and painkillers. The eye is numbed with drops; you will not be given an injection. Laser surgery is painless. In the first few hours after LASIK surgery you may have a foreign body sensation, as if a foreign object were scratching the eye, you may experience watery eyes and blurry vision. These symptoms will disappear after 2-3 hours.

How long does the procedure take?

The actual procedure takes only a few minutes. Including pre-LASIK and follow-up examinations, you should plan to be at the clinic for 1 to 1.5 hours. After surgery, you can recover in our recovery room.

What you should know:

Generally, you will have nearly normal vision the day after LASIK. We will provide you with special plastic eye shields to wear for the first few nights. During the first few weeks, you will also have to use different types of eye drops, as instructed. Call us immediately, if you experience severe pain or a sudden deterioration.

Do not rub your eye(s) for the first week after LASIK and do not use any make-up. You must not get water in your eye(s) when you wash your face or take a shower. After a week, you may gently rub your eye(s). For the first wo weeks after your LASIK procedure you should avoid anything that can put strain on your eyes, such as swimming, saunas or diving. In the first few weeks there will still be slight changes of vision. This will stabilise after approx. 3-4 weeks.

As a general rule, the less the vision defect before LASIK, the greater the chance that you will not need distance glasses after surgery. Even with optimal success – i.e. no need for distance glasses – you should expect that you will need reading glasses, but this is also true for most people with normal vision from about 50 years of age.

Before surgery

Is LASIK suitable for me?

LASIK allows for the correction of refractive errors from up to +4 to -8 dioptres (in some cases up to -10dpt.) and astigmatism up to 5 dioptres. For the final assessment, an examination and consultation are required.

How is LASIK performed?

LASIK is performed as an outpatient procedure and on both eyes in in quick succession. Surgery on both eyes takes only a few minutes, with the actual laser procedure taking just a few seconds. After surgery you can recover in our comfortable recovery room for long as you like, while being looked after by our staff.

How long will I be off work?

You won’t have to take time off, but you should take it easy for the next 1-2 days and don’t do too much work on the computer. You should also wait a few days before going back to your exercise routine. Your vision will already be very good the day after LASIK.

What risks are involved?

Although the refractive surgery procedures used today have a very low overall risk of serious complications, it cannot be completely excluded. The risk of vision being worse after the procedure than before, is very low. For example: Less than 1% of all LASIK patients experience complications. Your doctor will inform you about your individual risk in the consultation.

Are there long-term studies?

The first successful procedure (“keratomileusis”) for the correction of vision defects, was developed 40 years ago. This laid the foundation for the PRK and LASIK procedures used today. The LASIK method has been carried out since 1991, and is today a recognised and established ophthalmological procedure. Both the technique and the devices used are being continuously improved.

If you have more questions, Dr Beate Steinhorst will answer them in person at our free information evenings or during a phone consultation: +49 (0)611 360 220