Since I was in the fifth grade, about 10 years old, I’ve had to wear glasses. 2 years later, I tried wearing contact lenses which was definitely a step above but still such a hassle to maintain. I was stubborn and lazy, refusing to take them out before going to bed. Please don’t do this!! Several eye infections and allergies later, I finally decided was enough is enough. I did not want to be blind anymore. Life with contact lenses was just too tedious for me. My mom suggested that I make an appointment right away with American Eye Center and meet Dr. Alnette Tan, EyeMD, Ophthalmologist and Eye Surgeon since she had also undergone LASIK surgery which restored her 20/20 vision. I had a consultation at their Greenbelt Branch and the rest is history. NOW, I CAN SEE!! If you’ve always dreamed of being able to ditch your glasses/contacts, consider getting LASIK! Below is my lil’ mini vlog about my LASIK experience at American Eye Center and some answers to your frequently asked questions:
Q: What is LASIK?
A: LASIK is a refractive surgery involves surgical procedures that correct common vision problems (nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism and presbyopia) to reduce your dependence on prescription eyeglasses and/or contact lenses.
Q: How do I know if I’m a candidate for LASIK?
A: A successful LASIK procedure is determined largely by whether you meet certain patient criteria and if laser eye surgery is right for you. Keep in mind, your eyes must be healthy, your cornea must be thick enough, your pupils are not too large, you must have stable vision for at least a year, certain procedures require you to be aged 18; others, 21. Patients younger than these ages can be treated as an exception at the discretion of the LASIK surgeon with permission from the patient’s parent(s) or guardian. If you are unsure if you are a candidate, book a free appointment at American Eye Center so that they can test to see if you can undergo LASIK.
Q: Is it permanent?
A: In most cases the improved vision LASIK surgery provides is permanent. But in a limited number of cases — usually due to changes that can occur in the lens inside the eye, with or without LASIK surgery — some nearsightedness, farsightedness and/or astigmatism can return over time, causing blurry vision. My mom had hers done 6 years ago and her grade has gone back up a little as she is getting older. This can be corrected by having the laser done again but without having the flap cut anymore.
Q: What was your grade before the surgery?
A: -3.50 with astigmatism in both eyes.
Q: How long does the surgery take?
A: The whole procedure takes about 15 minutes including prep and laser treatment. The actual laser takes less than 30 seconds per eye. Honestly, it feels like you’re in and out real quick. Like, wait was that it??
Q: Does it hurt?
A: Before we began the LASIK surgery, they applied eye drops to numb the surface of my eyes, no injections or anything like that! During surgery, the first step is creating the flap — no blades necessary. You may feel a pressure sensation, but it is more of an odd or uncomfortable feeling than a painful one as your eyes will be kept open so you wont be able to blink. Honestly, I was super anxious and nervous for this surgery but Dr. Alnette was calm and made the whole process smooth by talking me through the whole surgery. She told me to focus on certain lights, count in my head, and facilitated the whole process so there was no cause for worry. If not for her and the angry bird pillow they gave me to hug, I’d be a WRECK HAHA. I also knew my mom and dad were watching over me from the viewing room so I felt very safe.
Q: How long does it take for it to heal?
A: My eyes were very hazy and watery immediately after the surgery. An hour after, I took a 3-hour nap. When I woke up, I felt as if my eyes were as good as new. My eyes were a bit sensitive to bright lights though. The morning after, I woke up with no uncomfortable feeling and everything was gucci, fam.
Q: What can/can’t I do after the surgery?
A: You will be given protective glasses for your eyes post-surgery. You cannot wash your face right away or use any tissue/towels near your eyes. Wait till the next day to shower and avoid your eyes getting wet just to be sure. You are not allowed to wear eye makeup for a week and cannot go swimming for a month. I believe you can still wear colored contact lenses but with no grade — best to wait a week. Right after the surgery, you’re just gonna want to sleep, believe me. When you wake up, your vision will be less blurry and more stable. Make sure to wear the provided protective eye guards when sleeping so you don’t accidentally touch your eyes.
Tip: Be sure to bring a companion with you during surgery. You will need someone to assist you walking and to get home as your eyes will be swollen and your vision may be a bit hazy and your eyes will be watery. Some people can actually drive right after, but honestly fam, don’t take the chance and take a Grab home if somebody cannot accompany you.
You will be given eye drops (an antibiotic, and anti-inflammatory, and a lubricant) to use within the first week and month of your surgery. You’re allowed to watch TV or look at your phone.I had a checkup to find out what my grade was the next day after the surgery, followed by another checkup after one week, which will then be followed up by a checkup after one month from my surgery. I was told that my vision should be stable by then eyyy.
Q: What is your grade now?
A: 20/20, fam. I SEE YOU.
Q: How much is the surgery?
A: PHP 75-89K direct payment or installment. They have a promo where you can get 15% OFF so make sure to ask them!
Q: Where can I have LASIK done?
A: American Eye Center!! They have two branches — one in Greenbelt 5, Makati and the other in Shangri-La Plaza, Ortigas.
Q: Why should I have it done at American Eye Center?
A: They have the top of the line equipment that is constantly serviced and kept in tip-top shape. The experience is exceptionally smooth and stress-free. Please do request for Dr. Alnette Tan as she is professional, will definitely make you feel at ease as she guides you through the surgery and truly cares about her patients.
I highly recommend having LASIK done at American Eye Center! There is no reason to doubt or feel scared about getting the surgery as everything was ez pz, fam (honestly, if I can do it, you can too!!) Schedule an appointment now with Dr. Alnette Tan and see the world in a whole new way (aka in HD), literally.
American Eye Center
Level 4, Greenbelt 5
Legaspi St., Legaspi Village, Ayala Center, , Makati City, Philippines, (near New World Hotel, Makati Shangrila Hotel, & Manila Peninsula Hotel)Phone: +63 2 729 EYES (3937)Monday to Friday 10:00am to 5:00pm
Saturday: 10:00am to 3:00pm
Closed on Sundays and holidays
Level 5, Shangri-La Plaza
EDSA corner Shaw Blvd., Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong City, Philippines (near EDSA Shangrila Hotel & Richmonde Hotel)Phone: +63 2 636 0762Monday to Friday 10:00am to 5:00pm
Saturday 9:00am to 2:00pm
Closed on Sundays and holidays
This post is in partnership with American Eye Center. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own. Thank you for supporting my collaborations!
Photographs by Renz Reyes