Categorized | Healthy Lifestyle

Monovision LASIK allows an active lifestyle

By Dr. Steven A. Nielsen

After the age of 40, we begin to lose the ability to focus, or accommodate, the lens of our eyes. This is not caused by disease or illness — it is just a natural part of the aging process.

When the ability to focus is lost, the eyes cannot adjust or focus images at different distances. This issue is called Presbyopia, which begins to affect just about everyone sometime before age 50. As we age, our natural crystalline lenses begin to stiffen and become less flexible. Consequently, the lens’ ability change focus quickly is slowed, and the range of focus decreases, particularly affecting near vision. This is when most people begin using reading glasses, even if they still see distances well.

The Nielsen Eye CenterBifocal glasses are usually prescribed to correct this, enabling vision to be acceptable for both distance and near vision. Presbyopia can also be corrected with Monovision LASIK. In this laser procedure, one eye is corrected for distance and one eye for near vision. Typically, the eye that is corrected for distance is the dominant eye. Incredible breakthroughs have been made in the technology surrounding LASIK procedures. Modern-day research and development has enabled ophthalmologists worldwide to improve the consistency of LASIK surgery results and minimize any risks.

Monovision LASIK developed out of a need to improve upon an earlier procedure called conductive keratoplasty, or CK. It’s not that CK did not work — it is, in fact, a very successful treatment for presbyopia. But it is not a permanent solution. Over time, in as little as two years in some cases, CK gradually reverses itself, returning the patient’s vision to its original state. Consequently, CK patients face the expense and inconvenience of repeating the surgery or finding another solution to gain clear vision within a few years of having CK surgery. Monovision LASIK is one of those solutions. This procedure offers several advantages over other methods of achieving Monovision:

•It is permanent with no need to repeat this procedure or find another solution.

•It avoids all the hassle of cleaning and maintaining contact lenses.

•It leaves the crystalline lens intact.

•It is approved for professionals in sports, aviation, emergency medical personnel and other vision intensive professions.

Another great advantage of Monovision LASIK is that the patient is able to experiment with contact lenses or a trial lens in the doctor’s office before undergoing Monovision LASIK to make sure he or she will be able to adapt to this type of vision. This trial period is typically two weeks in length, enough time for the patient to determine whether or not Monovision LASIK is the right choice.

Imagine living your active lifestyle without the hassle of glasses or contacts. Monovision LASIK surgery can make those dreams a reality. Being able to travel and staying active in the community and at home can all be enhanced by this simple procedure.

Dr. Steven A. Nielsen is the chief ophthalmologist at The Nielsen Eye Center. To schedule a consultation or examination with Dr. Nielsen, call 617-401-8542 daily between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. or email


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