Table of ContentsLASIK - The BasicsWhy Choose UsFinancing Your ProcedureSigns You Are Ready for LASIKGood Candidates for LASIK
LASIK Kansas City
Dr. Cavanaugh has the training, experience, and unsurpassed technology to provide you with optimal LASIK eye surgery results
Cavanaugh Eye Center has helped thousands of people realize their dreams of seeing clearly without having to rely on glasses or contact lenses. Science is constantly providing new and promising advances in LASIK surgery, and Cavanaugh Eye Center is at the leading edge. We stay on top of the latest in technology and procedures to ensure our patients receive superior results. More than ever before, we are able to tailor LASIK procedures at our Overland Park practice to the individual needs of our patients.
Let us help provide your unique eyes with a solution that gives you the best chance at achieving visual independence.
LASIK – The Basics
LASIK, which stands for laser in-situ keratomileusis, is a procedure in which a laser is used to reshape the cornea. LASIK was approved for use in the United States in 1999 and is one of the safest, most highly effective medical procedures done today. In fact, an estimated 718,000 people are expected to get LASIK in 2020.
How LASIK Works
The cornea is often considered to be the “window to the eye.” Much like a window, its shape determines how light enters the eye and how well we see. Much like looking through an antique warped window, our view is altered when we see the world through a misshapen cornea. Our nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism distorts our view of the world.
LASIK allows Dr. Cavanaugh to correct these irregularities, and in doing so, correct moderate to high levels of nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), or astigmatism.
Your first step is to schedule a refractive consultation appointment with Dr. Cavanaugh or Dr. Jaynes and one of our highly-trained surgical counselors. Our experienced eye doctors will discuss all of your options in an appointment that will last about two hours. This consultation will completely prepare you for surgery and will include an exam where your eyes will be dilated, diagnostic testing, and surgical counseling. You will have the opportunity to ask any questions you have about LASIK; however, you can read our frequently asked questions about LASIK ahead of time here.
At the conclusion of your consultation with our eye experts and we have determined you are a good candidate for LASIK, your surgery date is set.
LASIK is an outpatient procedure that requires no injections, stitches, or needles. We typically perform surgery on both eyes the same day. Although most patients will be able to see well enough to drive following the procedure, we request that you arrange for someone to drive you to and from your procedure.
On the day of your procedure, you will be asked to arrive about 30 to 45 minutes in advance of your scheduled surgery time to check-in and be prepared for surgery. Our technicians may repeat some of the painless tests that were conducted during your initial visit. If additional testing is indicated, do not worry. This is completed to ensure that your eyes have remained stable and to eliminate the possibility of errors. Expect to be with us for 1 ½ to 2 hours on your procedure day.
- When you are ready for your procedure, numbing eye drops will be administered so that you can remain comfortable during your LASIK eye surgery. You will also be offered a medication that will help calm your nerves.
- Dr. Cavanaugh will personally speak with you, answer questions and examine your eyes.
- Once the medications have taken effect, you will be escorted to our laser surgery suite, where you will lie back on our laser bed to relax.
- A small device will be placed around your eyelids to keep you from blinking during the procedure.
- During your LASIK procedure, Dr. Cavanaugh will guide a special laser, called a femtosecond laser, to create a flap in the outer skin-like covering of the cornea called the epithelial layer.
- The flap is gently lifted, and an extremely precise excimer laser is then used to shape the cornea to the proper curvature.
- Once this is completed, the flap is carefully set back into place.
The entire procedure takes less than 10 minutes, and the majority of patients report very little, if any, discomfort. People frequently voice concern that they will move involuntarily while the laser is working. This is not a problem. Our lasers are equipped with technology that senses movement more quickly than the human body can react. If you shift, the laser shuts off in a matter of microseconds, then resumes when you are repositioned. There is virtually no danger of incorrect laser treatment due to movement.
LASIK Post-op Care
Following the procedure, you will be given easy-to-follow instructions and eye drops, and you will be able to go home with your designated driver. Once the numbing drops wear off, your eyes may be mildly irritated (scratchy, stinging, tearing) for the first 3-4 hours following surgery, so you will be asked to go home and take a nap. Most patients wake up feeling very little discomfort and notice an improvement in vision almost immediately after their nap and certainly by the next day; however, your vision may require several months to fully stabilize. This can vary based on several factors including the amount of prescription treated.
It is best to arrange for someone to drive you to and from your required first follow-up appointment with your eye doctor the day following your surgery. During the follow-up visit, your eyes will be examined to assess the results of your LASIK procedure and ensure proper healing. For best results, you must keep all recommended post-operative visits.
Why Choose Cavanaugh Eye Center For LASIK?
Experience and Skill of our Surgeon
Training – Dr. Cavanaugh is a fellowship-trained corneal specialist. He received his advanced corneal surgical training at the Wilmer Eye Institute of Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. He has dedicated his life’s work specifically towards treatment of diseases of the cornea. Because most refractive surgery procedures involve surgery on the cornea, it is best to have a true corneal fellowship-trained specialist involved in your care.
Experience – Experience matters when it comes to LASIK. Dr. Cavanaugh has been performing laser eye surgery since 1990 and has done over 28,000 refractive procedures. He has extensive experience with all approved laser platforms, as well as, other types of refractive procedures such as refractive lens implants and refractive cataract surgery.
Leadership – Dr. Cavanaugh has been at the forefront of the laser vision correction field since entering practice in 1990; as a key study investigator, he was instrumental in getting refractive lasers approved for use in the United States. He was a co-investigator of the first FDA guided LASIK study to use the microkeratome in the United States.
Personal Care and Attention
Dr. Cavanaugh and Dr. Jaynes take a very personalized approach with each patient and are directly involved with your care every step of the way. You will find that our outstanding staff is highly skilled, knowledgeable, professional, and very friendly. Dr. Cavanaugh has hand-picked the best in the field to bring you the finest experience and results at Cavanaugh Eye Center.
The Best LASIK Technology
Cavanaugh Eye Center is committed to providing the most modern technology available for our patients. Dr. Cavanaugh has used his personal experience with all types of lasers, data from FDA clinical trials, and the results of his own comparative study to choose the premier laser on the market today. Our laser utilizes the most up-to-date technology available to provide unsurpassed customization. Small spot-scanning laser technology, wavefront optimized laser treatments, topography guided customization, femtosecond LASIK flap creation, and accurate eye-tracking all contribute to excellent vision post-operatively.
Femtosecond Laser Blade-Free Technology
Bladeless LASIK, also known as blade-free or femto LASIK eye surgery, utilizes a femtosecond laser to create a small flap in the clear tissue in the front of the eye, the cornea. This painless process allows Dr. Cavanaugh to then use a second laser, an excimer laser, to reshape the front of the eye and provide you with clear vision. During the procedure, Dr. Cavanaugh uses the latest technology in blade-free flap formation. In conventional LASIK, a microkeratome (small instrument) is used to create the LASIK flap. In most cases, blade-free flap formation is the preferred method, but occasionally the microkeratome method is indicated. Dr. Cavanaugh is a cornea fellowship-trained surgeon and is an expert in both modalities.
Small Spot-Scanning Laser Technology
The second laser used during your LASIK procedure is called an excimer laser. This laser reshapes the tissue to correct your prescription and flaws in your visual system. At Cavanaugh Eye Center, our excimer laser uses small spot-scanning laser technology. This “dancing light” technology allows for more precise placement of the laser pattern to customize your treatment. Also known as “flying-spot” lasers, these machines use small-diameter laser beams to produce the treatment zone after being scanned across the cornea. Small spot-scanning lasers have the potential to produce the smoothest and most customized LASIK treatments yielding superior quality of vision. Additionally, all treatments at Cavanaugh Eye Center are “wavefront optimized” and help maintain the natural shape of the cornea post-operatively. Wavefront optimization significantly reduces unwanted side effects from previous excimer laser models, including older small spot-scanning lasers which are still in use in many practices today. Even older generation broad beam lasers use a singular large round beam for the treatment. Potential disadvantages of broad beam lasers are an increased chance of over-correction, decentration of the treatment zone, and lack of customization.
Wavefront Guided Aberrometer
Proper diagnostic measurements pre-operatively are key to ensuring excellent outcomes. Wavefront technology is the most significant, recent advancement in LASIK surgery. Wavefront aberrometry precisely identifies unique distortions within the entire optical system, allowing for more customized treatment.
Eye-Tracking System Technology
Advanced eye-tracking allows our laser to follow any eye movement during your procedure, virtually eliminating the possibility of laser pulses being applied in the wrong place. This advanced tracker senses and tracks the rotation of your eye during treatment to enhance the accuracy of astigmatism correction to unprecedented levels.
Outstanding Facilities – Laser Suite
Cavanaugh Eye Center is proud to offer our patients a state-of-the-art laser suite that is absolutely unique to our practice. Dr. Cavanaugh has customized this suite to achieve superior surgical results for his patients. It is the only laser suite in the Kansas City area to have been built from the ground up specifically for the purpose of performing consistently accurate laser eye surgery. Maintaining control over the environment of the laser suite ensures the ideal temperature and humidity for optimum laser performance and surgical outcomes. The laser suite is equipped with its own humidifier, dehumidifier, power supply, and HEPA bacteria filtration system. There is no safer or more ideal atmosphere in which to have your laser eye surgery.
Countless Happy Patients
Find more LASIK testimonials from our patients here.
Financing Your LASIK Procedure
There are several payment options available to cover the cost of LASIK
At Cavanaugh Eye Center, we believe clear, natural vision should be accessible to as many people as possible. We work with insurance companies when we can, and we partner with CareCredit to provide low monthly payment options that fit nearly any budget. You can also opt to use FSA or HSA flex-spending accounts, both of which use pre-tax dollars.
The cost of LASIK is a global fee, meaning the cost includes your preoperative examination, surgeon fee, operating room charges, surgical supplies, and all of your post-operative visits related to the procedure for two years. Office visits un-related to the procedure will be charged as usual. If you are in the 10-15% of patients who require a LASIK enhancement procedure, this is included for two years and then provided for a significantly discounted fee thereafter.
Refractive surgery is elective and is rarely ever covered by insurance. The patient is responsible for the fees and payment in full is required prior to the procedure or at check-in at the front desk on the day of surgery.
Payment in full is required at or before the time of service. We accept cash, check, Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express. We do not provide financing in-house for elective/refractive procedures however financing arrangements can be made through CareCredit. The CareCredit process is quick and efficient.
CareCredit to Cover the Cost of LASIK
CareCredit offers a full range of payment plans so you can find one that works best for you. With the popular ‘Deferred Interest’ plans, there are no interest charges if you pay your balance in full within the specified time period. CareCredit offers 12, 18, or 24-month plan options with low monthly payments available. You apply via www.carecredit.com and your specific rates will depend on your credit rating. The process is simple and you will have a credit determination quickly. Our surgical counselors can provide you information about CareCredit and help guide you through the process.
Signs You Are Ready For LASIK
Glasses and contacts can be costly, extremely limiting, and prevent you from living the lifestyle you want. If you are experiencing these situations, it’s time for LASIK!
Glasses and contacts are slowing you down – It’s either uncomfortable or impossible to wear contacts or glasses for many sports and other adventurous activities. Contacts can irritate your eyes if they become dried out and there is always the risk of losing them while you’re in the middle of activities. Glasses often bounce around on your face and can end up broken. Wearing glasses can even be a hassle for everyday outdoor activities because of factors like fog, rain, and your glasses sliding down your nose while sweating. It’s a lot easier to be active and enjoy the outdoors when you don’t have to worry about glasses or contacts getting in the way.
Your job isn’t glasses or contact friendly – From law enforcement and construction to working in dusty environments or with chemicals, wearing glasses or contacts could be a hazard and LASIK may be a necessity to keep your eyes safe. If you spend a lot of time in front of a computer for your job, you struggle as well. You can’t wear blue-light-filtering glasses over your prescription glasses, and even with contacts in, your eyes can become dry and feel strained.
You are spending too much money on replacements – Glasses can easily break while completing your normal daily activities, not only is it inconvenient, it’s also expensive to replace. Wearing contact lenses lets you keep your glasses safe in their case but contacts are also a financial drain. It’s much too easy to drop them, lose them, rip them, or blink them out of your eyes, and every time you have to replace a lens, it is just money wasted.
Good Candidates for LASIK
If you are nearsighted, farsighted, or have astigmatism, you may be able to benefit from LASIK. The best way to find out is to visit Cavanaugh Eye Center for a complimentary comprehensive refractive consultation, which includes diagnostics by some of the most advanced technology available.
Other factors to determine if you are a good candidate include:
Your age – If your vision problems are caused by presbyopia, many patients elect LASIK with a “blended vision” set up to optimize their freedom from reading glasses. If blended vision is not a great option for you, Dr. Cavanaugh specializes in many different types of presbyopia-correcting lens implants that may suit your needs.
Your overall eye health – LASIK does not address eye diseases such as keratoconus or glaucoma. Often, there are more appropriate treatments for those issues.
Your eye anatomy – Factors such as thin corneas, large pupils, or scarring from contact lens use may mean that you are not an ideal candidate for LASIK. However, you may be a candidate for another life-changing procedure like ASA/PRK or lens implantation.
Prescription drugs or pregnancy – Some drugs, such as Accutane and certain migraine medications, can affect the eyes, as can the hormones related to pregnancy. Be sure to tell Dr. Cavanaugh if you are taking any prescription drugs, or if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Your expectations – LASIK is a remarkable medical procedure, but it is not right for everyone. Dr. Cavanaugh will ensure that your expectations are in line with what the surgery can provide before determining if you are a good candidate.
What if I am Not a Good Candidate for LASIK?
Cavanaugh Eye Center is dedicated to providing our patients with the priceless gift of natural vision. That’s why we have invested in the time and technology needed to provide the most proven, effective solutions for vision problems.
We offer a number of LASIK alternatives for those who are not good candidates for LASIK. Dr. Cavanaugh will perform a thorough examination to determine which, if any, laser eye surgery solution is right for you.
Kansas City LASIK Surgery
Are you ready to see what you’ve been missing? Schedule a Consultation Today!