Astigmatism is a very common condition that refers to the imperfection of the curvature of the eye wherein either the lens or cornea is curved differently in one direction or the other. The most common symptoms of astigmatism are blurred vision, distorted vision, eyestrain, discomfort in the eye, headaches, difficulty seeing at night and forced squinting to see better. Sometimes, especially in children and adolescents, astigmatism is unnoticeable to the individual and only diagnosed when vision is tested by a pediatrician or ophthalmologist.
The eye contains two structures with round, curved surfaces that refract light onto the retina: the cornea and the lens. Either of these types of astigmatism can cause blurred vision in more than one direction either horizontally, vertically or diagonally. Astigmatism may also be combined with other common refractive errors such as nearsightedness (myopia) and farsightedness (hyperopia). One of the most important aspects of successful eye surgery is in matching the procedure to the specific eye condition being treated. LASIK is often considered the optimal solution for refractive errors and is the first option suggested for correcting astigmatism.
Does LASIK correct astigmatism? The level of astigmatism and whether the astigmatism is symmetric or asymmetric will determine if you can get LASIK to correct astigmatism. Corneal astigmatism can be corrected by LASIK with precision lasers that are programmed to reshape the cornea by removing a tiny amount of tissue. The goal is to make the eye more symmetrical by changing it from an oval, egg-like shape to a rounded shape. Lenticular astigmatism cannot be effectively treated by LASIK but instead corrective lenses including a toric lens is usually prescribed.
Comprehensive eye exams are the best way to diagnose astigmatism. While LASIK is a great choice for correcting astigmatism, it is important to be evaluated by an ophthalmologist who can test for the level, type, and severity of astigmatism to best suggest a treatment option. To schedule your eye exam to ensure the health and clarity of your vision, contact Rosenbaum Eye and Laser Center at 517-393-2020 or schedule your visit with us online at WEBSITE.