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How does laser eye surgery affect your skiing?

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 

I'm thinking of getting laser eye sugery because I'm tired of my glasses fogging up and my contacts just irritate my eyes.

 

I was wondering if any of you folks have undergone laser eye surgery. If so, how has your skiing experience changed after the surgery? Do your eyes get dry? Are they sensititive?

 

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated, as it will help me make a decision. Thanks!

post #2 of 22

   I had my eyes done 4 years ago. 20-450 in one and 20-250 in the other. 20-20 in both now and it was the best money I ever spent. I have had no dry eyes, or the "fogging" around lights at night time you sometimes hear about. I think not having to buy the bigger goggles that fit over my glasses and not having to see through 2 sets of lenses make the terrain differences more easily seen than before. The only down side is that now I need reading glasses for small print, so if you spend a lot of time reading trail maps it might be harder to read them then before. Fair trade as far as I am concerned.

post #3 of 22
I had LASIK surgery done in 2004, and it was the best money I've ever spent. I still see 20-20, and don't need reading glasses. I had the halo effect for 2-3 months -- it was very noticeable at first, but became much less noticeable each day. Within one week or so it was negligible, but did last for a few months. Halo effect happens only at night when you look into lights, so I can't imagine it being a problem during skiing.

Get it done by a good doctor, follow your doctor's orders for post-op recovery, and enjoy life without glasses.
post #4 of 22

I had LASIK in '05, really happy with it.  The only side effect I experience is that polarized lenses make things look a little funny, particularly flat glass surfaces (e.g. back windshield of the car in front of me when driving, it looks opaque-ish with a funky plaid pattern to me).  I stay away from polarized lenses as a result, haven't had any trouble while skiing.  

 

I had to get used to not trying to take off my glasses when doing things like putting on or taking off a T shirt; I would reach for glasses that weren't there even after a couple of weeks.  smile.gif

post #5 of 22

I  have Lasik Eye Surgery 4 years ago. I'm now 60 y/o. At my doctors suggestion I opted for the Mono Vision Option with one eye adjusted for distance and the other eye for up close/reading. The surgery went well and the adjustment time for the brain to adapt to two eye setting was short. Now I enjoy seeing quite well at all distances. Improved my skiing experience not needing glasses and the ability to focus at distance, read the near terrain and read the trail map as easy as I did at age 20. Highly recommended if your doctor says you are a good candidate.

post #6 of 22

I had Lasik down 2 days after 9/11. It is the best think I ever did for myself (physically). I am 48 now and I am getting to the point where i have to grab the reading glasses from time to time, but that was to be expected. 

 

I had a real bad astigmatism and had a bear of a time with contacts and hated wearing glasses while skiing so Lasik was the best option. As mentioned, find a good Doctor and it could be the best couple of grand that you could pay to enhance your skiing 

post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by FairToMiddlin View Post

I had LASIK in '05, really happy with it.  The only side effect I experience is that polarized lenses make things look a little funny, particularly flat glass surfaces (e.g. back windshield of the car in front of me when driving, it looks opaque-ish with a funky plaid pattern to me).  I stay away from polarized lenses as a result, haven't had any trouble while skiing.  

 

Polarized lenses create a plaid pattern with most car rear windows as well as many other types of glass.  It's got nothing to do with your eyes.

post #8 of 22

I had laser surgery about seven years ago because I was tired of my glasses fogging up under my goggles -- no regrets.

post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by FairToMiddlin View Post

I had LASIK in '05, really happy with it.  The only side effect I experience is that polarized lenses make things look a little funny, particularly flat glass surfaces (e.g. back windshield of the car in front of me when driving, it looks opaque-ish with a funky plaid pattern to me).  I stay away from polarized lenses as a result, haven't had any trouble while skiing.  

 

I had to get used to not trying to take off my glasses when doing things like putting on or taking off a T shirt; I would reach for glasses that weren't there even after a couple of weeks.  smile.gif

 

I think this (highlighted) happens to everyone and is caused by the polarized glasses and not LASIK.  Maybe you just couldn't see it before the surgery because of your vision?

 

I'm quite interested in this thread as I'm thinking about this myself.  I'm FED UP with reading glasses, just starting to need glasses for distance and have a phobia about sticking things in my eye (i.e. contacts).  I'm considering getting over it and know I can but have to be determined.  LASIK might be the lesser of the evils.  Right now I can't even put eyes drops in without talking myself into it.  Can't even watch my wife put her contacts in.  I'm up to the point of talking out loud about making an appointment for contacts. 

 

Some where I heard or read that when people need correction for near and far, they do each eye differently (one near and one far) and takes a bit to get used to (re teach the brain).  I figure if I can handle that with contacts. I would get the LASIK.

 

Has anyone done that?  Each eye set differently.

 

Ken

post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by JMD View Post

I  have Lasik Eye Surgery 4 years ago. I'm now 60 y/o. At my doctors suggestion I opted for the Mono Vision Option with one eye adjusted for distance and the other eye for up close/reading. The surgery went well and the adjustment time for the brain to adapt to two eye setting was short. Now I enjoy seeing quite well at all distances. Improved my skiing experience not needing glasses and the ability to focus at distance, read the near terrain and read the trail map as easy as I did at age 20. Highly recommended if your doctor says you are a good candidate.

 

For some reason this didn't show up until after I posted.  Great info.  How long did it take to get used to?  Is short an hour or two weeks?

post #11 of 22

I had PRK three years ago today.  The recovery was a tad rough, but overall very happy with the results.  Virtually no halo problems nor dry eye.  The only recommendation I have is a. don't go the cheap route and b. research the difference in the types of surgeries available and pick what is best for you.  Lasik is great for the faster recovery, but it costs more and there are more incidents of dry eye and night halos, and you're less likely to end up with 20/20 or better (although the difference in this stat is pretty negligible from what I remember)  Also, they recommend PRK for people that participate in contact sports and high-altitude sports over lasik because damage can result to the corneal flap left over from Lasik.

post #12 of 22

I had LASIX in 2003. I have zero problems to report. My eyes needed drops for about 6 months per dr's order. The left eye is set up for distance and my right eye is set up for reading. I notice the difference when I am driving at night, but I am used to it now. I am just recently comtemplating getting reading glasses as I approach my mid 50s. Not dealing with contacts and glasses has been liberating. Skiing and surfing were the prime reasons for the surgery, but basketball and mountain biking are also way better without glasses and conctacts. It is also nice to buy a decent pair of sunglasses and wear them all the time, not just when I had contacts in my eyes. I am so glad I had them done.

post #13 of 22

I got "iLasik" in October, just before last season. I'm in my late 20's and ended up with 20/15 vision or better in each eye.

 

One of the best decisions I've ever made as glasses get in the way of most physical activity and are down right annoying to deal with when skiing. Never had an issue all season with my eyes -- always keep some eyedrops in a pocket for emergency dry eye though.

 

Turns out my ski buddy opted for Lasik in the offseason as well. No complaints from him either, just stoke. It will change your world, especially while skiing if you've always used glasses under goggles. Sold my Rx inserts here on Epic last season and haven't looked back!

post #14 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by exracer View Post

 

Polarized lenses create a plaid pattern with most car rear windows as well as many other types of glass.  It's got nothing to do with your eyes.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by L&AirC View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by FairToMiddlin View Post

I had LASIK in '05, really happy with it.  The only side effect I experience is that polarized lenses make things look a little funny, particularly flat glass surfaces (e.g. back windshield of the car in front of me when driving, it looks opaque-ish with a funky plaid pattern to me).  I stay away from polarized lenses as a result, haven't had any trouble while skiing.  

 

I had to get used to not trying to take off my glasses when doing things like putting on or taking off a T shirt; I would reach for glasses that weren't there even after a couple of weeks.  smile.gif

 

I think this (highlighted) happens to everyone and is caused by the polarized glasses and not LASIK.  Maybe you just couldn't see it before the surgery because of your vision?

 

 

Ken

 

Good lord, were my eyes that bad?  Glad I got the surgery, I had a pretty moderate (not the good kind) astigmatism(s) too.  Thinking about it, I never had COTS sunglasses all these years due to needing coke bottles on my face, probably why I didn't notice the polarized effect.

post #15 of 22

Is there a dry run before monovision (one near & one far eye) surgery.  I know a couple of people with monovision contacts, and most love it, but it gave my wife haedaches and she had to give up on them.  I did an accidental mv trial skiing last yezr when sunscreen dripped in my eye and I accidentally wiped one contact out of my eye.  It actually worked very well -- I adapted almost immediately, and it was nice to be able to read with the naked eye.

post #16 of 22

I think that IS the dry run.  One contact far and one contact near.  That is one of the reasons I'm trying to build up the courage to get contacts. 

 

I did do some research and it sounds like what I need is Conductive Keratoplasty, or “CK”.  Uses radio waves instead of a LASER.  It is more for people that need reading glasses which is my issue (+3).  If I could even get back to having to put things at arms reach again would be huge.

post #17 of 22

I had Lasik about two and a half years ago.  The results have been good.  Vision is better than 20/15 in both eyes.  There were some halos during the recovery period, but that went away after a few months.  I do have some lingering dry which is my only complaint.  I use a wetting drop at bed and when I get up.  For skiing, the results are very good.  It is good being able to see without messing with contacts or dealing with goggles over glasses.

post #18 of 22
Thread Starter 

Well, thanks everyone for pitching in your thoughts. Judging from all the replies, most of you have had a pleasant experience with LASIK, and for those that mentioned some drawbacks, the convenience of not wearing glasses during skiing far outweighs the minor inconvience of occasional dry eyes. 

 

I think I'll opt for laser eye surgery then, thanks for all the input!

post #19 of 22

I had intralasik this year 2012 in January (middle of ski season).  My prescription was about -6 with -.5 astigmatism. 

 

I felt good enough and had doctor's approval to go skiing within 2weeks in Tahoe.   Driving up that night I did have some big halos from oncoming traffic, and maybe was a bit more dangerous than usual; but I also got halos to a lesser degree with my older contact lenses, so it wasn't a huge degredation, so I switched driving duties with my ski buddy.

 

The first few trips through march, perhaps due to altitude, eyes were blurrier than when I was at sea level (even with eyedrops), so there is some recovery time. It isn't something that will stop you, and it is just minor, you just may not be able to read signs from 500feet away.   So don't except to get away scot-free immediately with zero tradeoffs. It takes some *months* to fully heal up, now I rarely use eyedrops at all, and the halos are gone.  

 

Even while skiing, Eyedrops were not too much of an issue. I wear goggles, so the interior stays more humid then if went with sunglasses.  So even the first trip past the surgery, just drops before goggling up for first lift, drops at lunch, and drops at the end were enough to keep the eyes moist (everyone is different though).  Probably, the casinos with secondhand smoke were more irritating than the slopes.  

 

Do get a pair of goggles with low enough VLT (dark).

 

It is a huge plus to have no glasses (OTG is so bug-eyed), or if you're contacts, the risk of your contact getting dried up, irritanted or dislodged.   If anything, I think my eye health maybe better and stronger now now since I'm not stuffing a piece of plastic in there every day.  So the eyes are stronger and probably more resiliant to getting poked or something.  For this reason, most pro-athletes actually consider laser surgery.  If you're a football player and your contact gets popped out in a tackle, you're in big trouble as compared to having the laser surgery..

 

After 15years of contacts, not a single night or morning has passed (6months now), that I don't appreciate that I don't have to deal with the lenses. 

 

If you are planning it, I would suggest just starting eyedrops now.  Per the suggestion of my surgeon, It will improve the health of your eyes, which will pay dividends in a speedier recovery.  The key to avoiding dry eyes is just to stay ahead of it, and just put in drops even when your eyes aren't dry yet (just like drinking water for hydration). 

 

If you are wearing contact lenses, you will need to stop using them for several weeks (some doctors will care less and roll the dice, but it's better  to let things stabilize for longer).  So if you're planning lasik, I suggest to just stop using the lenses now, just so you don't have to go through the waiting period later (or in case you have a doctor that  like to rush things).

 

 

As far as the different options available, I suggest you research it a bit so you understand it; but talk it over with the the place; they will examine you and tell you what may work best for you.   Most places will give free "evaluation" and pressure you to sign up.  This is usually the minimum set of tests so they can just tell if you are a good candidate and then they can sell you surgery (more indepth tests later after you sign).  Don't be afraid to walk away without signing anything or checking out a few places to see what you are most comfortable with.  


Some places will  also let you observe a surgery if you wish.  It's not for the faint of heart.  It's actually easier as the patient, since all you see is a flashing light, as compared to a third party seeing someone's eye get lasered.


Edited by raytseng - 7/16/12 at 10:30am
post #20 of 22

in case you haven't found them, I suggest the following informational links.

 

 

Here is more info on lasik in general from the FDA.
 
and another website
post #21 of 22

I had PRK about 5 years ago. I was not a candidate for LASIK as my lenses were flatten from sleeping with contacts for an extended period of time.  It took about one month before I received my final vision which is still 20/20.  

 

No Halos or any other adverse side effects.  Like others stated, best money I ever spent.

post #22 of 22

Well considering the Air Force uses PRK to make people pilot qualified and they require you to pass not only normal vision tests but depth perception tests as well, I think you will be okay. Only down side is that PRK takes a while for your eyes to recover. Air Force doctors make you wear sunglasses whenever you are outside for a full year. They are over cautious about it but it will take you time to recover.

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