According to Francis Price, Jr, MD, an ophthalmologist practicing in Indianapolis who presented the results, the research team could not find any studies that compared LASIK to a realistic control group because the perfect eye doesn’t exist. So they compared LASIK to the next best thing: contact lenses.
The team evaluated patient satisfaction with the two methods of vision correction by surveying 1,815 adults under the age of 60 at yearly intervals for two years. At the baseline, 1,111 of the survey participants were planning to undergo LASIK and 704 wore contact lenses.
The survey found that those in the LASIK Group who had previously worn glasses or contacts reported fewer night-vision problems after the two-year follow-up period, while those in the Contacts Group reported an increase in moderate to severe night-vision problems.
Cases of dry eyes increased in the Contacts Group and decreased in the group that had switched from contacts to LASIK. Though, dry eyes cases did increase in the LASIK subset that previously wore glasses, the rate was still less than the contacts group’s.
Survey Results – Changes in Night Vision and Dryness
Method of Vision Correction Baselline, % 2 Years, % Moderate to severe night-vision problems Contacts 12.0 16.0 Contacts to LASIK 12.5 9.5 Glasses to LASIK 17.0 5.7 Dry eyes at least half the previous week Contacts 14.0 16.0 Contacts to LASIK 11.0 9.0 Glasses to LASIK 6.0 15.0