What should I look for when choosing a LASIK surgeon?

Choosing the right surgeon is perhaps the most important decision you will make when considering the LASIK procedure. Having a surgeon you can trust is part of it, but there are some other qualifications you should evaluate in choosing a LASIK surgeon for your vision correction needs.

First of all ask if the surgeon is certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology (ABO). In order to be ABO certified, an ophthalmologist must complete a three to four-year residency program in ophthalmology, after which he or she must pass a written and oral examination in the field of general ophthalmology.

While most refractive and cataract surgeons in the United States will meet this standard, not all do. If the surgeon is not certified, you should look carefully at their experience and other professional qualifications.

Ask if your surgeon is a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) and at Least one other major refractive organization. Surgeons who are members of professional societies related to vision and general eye care are more likely to be up-to-date on the latest information, including new technologies and advancements in refractive and cataract surgery.

Shah Eye Center makes it easy to check our surgeons’ credentials. A list of all my qualifications and those of all the members of my surgical team are listed on my website at: www.shaheyecenter.com. Click on “Our Doctors,” at the top of page.

Here are three tips for choosing a LASIK surgeon:

Do your homework. The Internet, your local chamber of commerce, and medical organizations are all good resources.

Speak with friends and family who have had the procedure and find out what they recommend. See what their experiences were. Also reach out to your personal physician and optometrist for their input and, if possible, a referral.

During an initial consultation with a LASIK surgeon, he or she should be eager to answer all of your questions and help educate you so you can make an informed decision. You should be made fully aware of the risks and benefits in order to make the choice that is right for you!

Know that most, but not all people are candidates. And finally, discuss your expectations about your vision after LASIK.

About Dr. Pankaj G. Shah: Dr. Shah is one of the only Cornea Specialists in the Rio Grande Valley. He is Fellowship-trained in Cornea, External Disease and Refractive Surgery. He is Board Certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology and is a General Ophthalmologist with a Cornea and Refractive Surgery Subspecialty. LASIK is a procedure that reshapes the cornea of the eye.