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What to expect on the day of your laser eye surgery consultation

So, you’ve made a shortlist of places you’re considering having your laser eye surgery but, do you really know what to expect on the day of your consultation? Well, we’re here to help! Here’s a walk through your first laser eye surgery consultation…

To begin with, you will have a series of non-invasive tests done by the ophthalmic technician. These include:

  1. Biometry
    This gives the technician measurements of the eye including the axial length, keratometry and the anterior chamber depth. This is crucial for determining the correct refractive outcome
  2. Auto Refractor
    This is used during the examination to provide an objective measurement of your refractive error and also your prescription for glasses/contact lenses.
  3. Pachymetry
    These measures the thickness of your corneas. This is important as your corneas needs to be thick enough for laser eye surgery
  4. Wavefront Analysis 
    This is used to track how light travels through your eyes and generally measures its optical quality. If distortions occur as light travels through your eyes, also known as an aberration, this could represent a vision error that could hinder your likelihood of being able to have laser eye surgery
  5. Atlas Topography
    The Atlas looks at the shape of the front of your eyes and maps it. This test also looks out for abnormalities you may potentially have
  6. Sirius
    This machine maps the surface at the front and the back of your cornea and also the chamber in the front of the eye
  7. OCT (Optical coherence tomography)
    This machine looks at layers of your retina and optic nerve. They are analysed separately to ensure everything is normal and safe for laser eye surgery

Please remember, all of these tests are non-invasive. None of the machines touch your eye, they simply give your eyes a thorough examination to ensure that you are suitable for laser eye surgery and that the best outcome can be achieved for you.

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Following on from your tests you will have a sit down the optometrist. This is required as they will test you to:

  • Measure the exact focus of your eye
  • Check your eye pressure
  • Understand how your brain will react to the laser eye surgery
  • Understand which one of your eyes is the most dominant
  • Make sure your general eye health is good

During the time with the optometrist, you will have an eye test that is similar to your usual eye test at your local opticians. Once again, this is all done to ensure that we can achieve the best possible outcome for you which is 20/20 vision or even better. After you have had your tests, your eye will be dilated. Your vision will become slightly blurred so do not worry. These are given to you so that the surgeon can look at the back of your eye and also make sure that your prescription is stable. This is also your opportunity to ask all the questions in the world!

We always want to make sure that our patients are 100% comfortable with what’s going to happen and that they are comfortable with us performing their surgery. During your time with the surgeon, you can ask questions about the surgery, post-operative care and even find out a bit more about the surgeon and his experience with laser eye surgery.

Following on from this, it will be decision-making time!

Providing that you’ve got the all clear to have laser eye surgery, you will be able to start planning when you want to have it done. You will be required to sign a consent form, stating that you give permission to the surgeon to do the procedure for you and that you understand the procedure. Once this is complete you can pick the date that is mutually convenient for you and the surgeon and start looking forward to having normal vision.

Wondering how safe laser eye surgery is or how to choose where to go to have your laser corrective eye surgery? Have a read of our blogs.

About the experts

Mr John Bolger | Consultant Ophthalmologist / Clinic Director


John Bolger is a Consultant Ophthalmologist and Clinic Director at My-iClinic. He specialises in ophthalmology, laser refractive surgery (SMILE, Presbyond, LASIK, PRK, PTK), refractive lens exchange (RLE), cataract surgery, glaucoma treatment and macular degeneration.

Over the course of his career, John Bolger has carried out over 35,000 cataract operations, 20 of which were for eye surgeons. He has also taught over 1500 young ophthalmologists worldwide as they begin their surgical careers.

Bolger has observed and played a part in the evolution of modern ophthalmology. He was one of the first surgeons to introduce microincision cataract surgery to the UK; he witnessed the advent of the femtosecond laser that is used in SMILE procedures and is seeing huge progress in the treatment of glaucoma and wet macular degeneration.

Remaining at the forefront of these advancements ensures that he is always providing his patients with the very best and latest treatments, whatever their condition.

In his free time, John Bolger enjoys flying helicopters, playing classical guitar, baking bread and pastries, and making fresh pasta.