LASIK eye surgery is FDA-approved for patients over age 18. If you’re under 18, your eyes are usually still developing (and growing) and your prescription may change frequently during these years. This means that the perfectly successful LASIK surgery performed at age 15 may not be as effective in providing clear vision if the teenager’s eye grows slightly in length and thereby changes the prescription slightly. LASIK surgery requires remaining reasonably still throughout the procedure which can be a significant challenge for younger teens. For this reason, as well, younger teens and children are generally not candidates for laser eye surgery.
The most beneficial age-range for having LASIK surgery is probably between ages 19 and 59 years old. This is typically the age-range where your distance eye prescription has fully stabilized and you can therefore expect LASIK to accurately and predictably correct your vision and also remain stable over time – unless there are significant changes in eye health during this time.
Between 45 and 55 years of age, most people experience normal and expected aging changes in their eyes resulting in increasing difficulty with near vision. This is usually first noticed when reading or looking at smaller fonts on cell phones without using reading glasses. This normal aging process, while of great concern to many people when it is first noticed, does not reflect poor health of your eyes and can be greatly improved or fully corrected with a customized type of LASIK surgery called monovision, amongst other options.
After the age of 55, you are considered to be a good candidate for LASIK if you are in good overall health, your eyes are healthy, and you want to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism. However, if you have certain age-related eye conditions like visually-significant cataracts, LASIK may not be the best option for correcting your vision. At the time of your examination, we can determine whether such changes will affect the likelihood of achieving an excellent result after LASIK surgery.