Can You Be Too Old for LASIK?

Posted on Wednesday, July 26th, 2023 by Dr. Binoy Jani

LASIK Culpeper

Our doctors have lost count of how many times one of our middle-aged patients expresses regret over not having considered LASIK sooner. Now that they’re over 40, they worry that they may no longer be a candidate for refractive surgery.

Although it is true that LASIK is often recommended for younger patients, age alone does not disqualify someone from the procedure. Below, the doctors at Vista Eye Specialists explain why it is acceptable to ask about LASIK no matter your age.

What Is the Ideal Age?

The main reason that eye doctors encourage interested patients in their 20s and 30s to get LASIK sooner than later is that presbyopia, also known as age-related farsightedness, strikes everyone starting around age 40 . LASIK is not designed to correct presbyopia since it is a progressive condition, so patients may need to keep updating their reading / near vision eye prescription anyway.

The other reason is that younger eyes tend to recover more easily from surgery. If you know you want to improve your vision with laser surgery, you might as well start to enjoy the benefits early.

All Potential Candidates Are Evaluated Individually

Vista Eye Specialists has safely and successfully performed LASIK on many patients in their 40s, 50s, and 60s. Patients are assessed on a case-by-case basis, just like all patients under 40 are. The best way to know for sure is by meeting with an ophthalmologist like Dr. Jani. He can check your health, your vision prescription (and the steadiness of said prescription), your pupil size, and the thickness of your cornea to determine if you are a good candidate.

From an age perspective, the only firm restriction is being too young for LASIK. The FDA has not approved LASIK for patients under the age of 18. If you are still a teenager, Dr. Jani encourages you to wait until vision has fully stabilized since your eyes continue to develop throughout puberty and your teenage years.

What If I’m Not a Candidate?

If your ophthalmologist determines that you are not an ideal candidate for LASIK for one reason or another, keep in mind that LASIK is not your only option. There are other refractive procedures like PRK, implantable contact lens (ICL), or refractive lens exchange (RLE) that may be your best solution for limiting your dependence on prescription lenses like glasses or contacts.

Schedule a Consultation

To find out if you are a good candidate for LASIK (or another refractive procedure), visit our office in Fredericksburg and Culpeper, VA. Please call (1-888-393-5264) to arrange a Time.