Laser vision correction is a simple procedure. First, a flap is created in the cornea. Traditionally, the flap was created using a microkeratome, which is a type of surgical blade. A newer technique is to use a laser for this critical first step.
The flap is folded back, and the second step of the LASIK procedure is to reshape the cornea. When the excimer laser reshapes the cornea is reshaped properly, the cornea is better able to focus light onto the retina, providing clearer vision. The corneal flap is laid back in place. LASIK procedures are performed on an outpatient basis, and most patients attain good vision by the very next day.
Both nearsighted and farsighted people can benefit from the LASIK procedure. With nearsighted people, the goal is to flatten a cornea that is too steep. With farsighted people, a steeper cornea is desired. Also, laser vision correction can also correct astigmatism by smoothing an irregular cornea into a more ideal shape.