Refractive Surgery: FAQs

Find a doctor in Refractive Surgery
Make an Appointment


Already a patient? Request an appointment with MyChart.

How does laser vision correction work?

The cornea is responsible for most of the refractive focusing power of the eye. Laser vision correction changes the curvature of the cornea, thus changing its focusing power.

How do I know what procedure is right for me?

You and your refractive surgeon will work together to determine the most appropriate procedure. An important factor is your current amount of refractive error. Each procedure corrects a specific range of error.

What should I expect in terms of vision improvement?

Although laser vision correction may reduce your dependence on glasses or contact lenses, it is unrealistic to expect a perfect result. Vision results vary based on your age and eyeglass prescription.

What problems or risks are associated with laser vision correction?

Side effects and the healing process vary from procedure to procedure. Side effects that may occur include:
  • Alteration of depth perception
  • Cataract formation
  • Corneal infection or ulceration
  • Corneal scarring
  • Dry eyes
  • Glare or halos (starburst-like images around lights)
  • Image sizes may appear different
  • Reduction in night vision
  • Reduction in visual clarity
  • Under or over-correction of vision

How long has Park Nicollet been performing laser vision correction?

Since 1992.

Will I need glasses after my surgery?

Some patients need glasses for driving after surgery. Most patients older than 40 will, at some point, need reading glasses.

I have diabetes and am interested in surgery. Am I a candidate?

You may be a candidate if your eye prescription is stable and your diabetes is under control. You still will have to undergo an examination by one of our surgeons to determine if you will be able to have surgery.

Has the FDA approved your laser and equipment?

Yes, our equipment is FDA-approved.

How often will you conduct follow-up exams?

We schedule a follow-up visit for one day after your procedure, then one to three weeks after your surgery. Follow-up appointments are then at three months, six months, nine months and one year after surgery. All postoperative examinations can be scheduled with your surgeon.

Will my insurane cover refractive procedures?

Most insurance companies do not provide coverage for laser vision correction. Many people use medical reimbursement accounts (flexible spending accounts or cafeteria plans) to help pay for these procedures. We also offer financing options.

Will another surgery exist in the future to help my eyesight?

New vision treatments always are on the horizon. For example, implantable contact lenses are a promising treatment for those whose prescription is out of range for standard refractive treatments. If you are not a candidate at this point, we can explain your vision correction options, such as contact lenses and corneal refractive surgery (CRT).

How can I pay for surgery?

Our all-inclusive, competitive prices include screening, surgeon consult and one year of follow-up appointments with your surgeon. Use your Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or our financing to cover the cost.