Refractive surgery survey 2018

Refractive surgeries are increasingly popular, with more clinics emerging in the UK since Optician’s last survey. Technological changes have meant a reduction in price and an increase in options, but concerns have again been raised around communicating the risks to patients. Sean Rai-Roche reports on the most recent findings

Since 2009, the time of Optician’s last refractive surgery survey, the market has undergone some fundamental changes. The number of clinics providing refractive surgery has increased, new types of treatment are available and public attitudes towards the procedure have changed.

Optician’s survey received dozens of responses from clinics across the country. Conversations with some of the main players as well as independent practices about their experiences over the past decade have helped create a picture of an innovative and changing marketplace, albeit one somewhat marred by disputes around patient information.

‘Surgery to correct refractive errors, using lasers or implants, to provide freedom from glasses or contact lenses is increasingly popular,’ state the Royal College of Ophthalmologists’ (RCO) refractive surgery standards. ‘Over 100,000 refractive surgery procedures (laser vision correction surgery) are undertaken every year in the UK and implant based alternatives are now widely available.’

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