When it comes to Laser Eye Treatment, all is not equal! Researching which clinic to choose can be a daunting experience, and it is often hard to decipher who the real laser specialists actually are. Eventually, some people may choose the cheapest option, but in reality, this could be the worst choice you can make.
Here is our guide to why you should ALWAYS select experience and quality of care over price.
Beware of Marketing
If you see a great deal, it can be very tempting to immediately sign up for surgery, and marketing professionals know this. Cut-price offers are commonly time-limited, which discourages the patient from being able to fully research the clinic and surgeon beforehand. By rushing into choosing a clinic, you may be increasing the risk of a bad outcome.
One fashion designer eagerly snapped up a laser deal online, but was left bitterly regretting the decision – the operation ruined her eyesight and her quality of life. Even high- street laser surgery ‘specialists’ have been exposed for using hard-selling practices in order to take advantage of prospective patients.
NOTE: The Royal College of Ophthalmologists guidelines indicate that there should be a cooling-off period for the patient to reconsider any decision they have made – not be forced to book surgery on the day of the consultation.
It is essential to always spend time looking for reviews and recommendations before you commit to surgery. In addition, look for the qualifications that the surgeon holds – the more experience and qualifications they have achieved, the higher the likelihood of a great result.
Surgical Experience & Quality of Care
By law, UK providers of refractive eye surgery must register with the Care Quality Commission and all laser eye surgeons must also register with the Royal College of Ophthalmologists. These safeguards generally mean that having surgery in the UK is a lower risk than going abroad for treatment.
In some foreign countries, although surgery may be cheaper, there could be no protection for a patient if things go wrong! Laser equipment is often reconditioned or second-hand, and quality control may be inferior.
This is why many British ex-pats or citizens from the Middle East tend to visit the UK for treatment, as they know there are stringent quality control measures in place.
It is also essential to note that visiting another country for laser surgery means you will not have any aftercare that you can easily access. Aftercare is as important as the surgery itself, and this should be a major concern for any patient. Indeed, complications after having surgical treatments abroad are on the rise.
Remember – you only have one pair of eyes! Here are the questions you should ask a surgeon:
- How many years have you been performing laser eye surgery?
- How many operations have you performed?
- Has your clinic invested in the latest laser technologies?
- Are you certified by the Royal College of Ophthalmologists and passed the relevant exams?
- Are your cornea and laser trained?
- Can I speak to previous patients?
- If I have a problem afterwards, where do I go for treatment?
- Does your aftercare programme last for 1 year?
- Is aftercare charged separately?
The Hallmarks of Excellence
Any leading clinic should welcome the enquiries and questions that you may have.
At AVC, we regularly state that we are one of the UK’s best clinics for very good reasons:
Our surgical team is led by Dr CT Pillai, considered to be one of the World’s elite laser eye surgeons. With over 25 years of experience, he is a fellow of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists and the Royal College of Surgeons. A full list of his achievements and accolades can be found here.
The AVC clinic is based on London’s prestigious Harley Street, and we offer free consultations to assess your suitability before surgery is planned. The consultations are extremely thorough – we only choose to operate if you are a good candidate for laser eye surgery.
We also have the largest independent optometrist network in the UK, meaning that after surgery you can have followed up aftercare appointments at a clinic closer to your home. Our aftercare programme lasts for 1 year, unlike the 3-6 months offered by many of our competitors.
If you would like to put the health of your eyes in the hands of the true experts, or if you have any other questions related to laser eye surgery, feel free to contact our friendly team on 0808 302 4124.