Resident BBC doctor Dr. Sarah Jarvis advised that the procedure is 95% safe, but reminded listeners that it is a surgery and is not entirely risk-free, therefore should make sure they research both the clinic and surgeon thoroughly before going ahead.
In the Daily Mail article Professor Gartry - a consultant ophthalmic surgeon - said a major concern, is just who is doing the surgery. “The very least that people should be doing is finding out who the surgeon is and their qualifications. They should also insist on talking to the surgeon before the procedure.
You don't want to be taking the advice of a non-professional counsellor who's possibly on a bonus scheme,” he said.
From day one Visualase has always taken a ‘healthcare’ rather than ‘sales’ approach to their patients. “Our approach puts the care of our patient first; from a thorough assessment to ensure they are actually suitable for laser eye surgery, right through to a personal consultation with the doctor who will ultimately perform the surgery.
There is absolutely no pressure for them to make a decision, and we don’t harass our patients with follow up ‘sales’ calls,” says clinic manager Hilary Smith.
The Royal College of Ophthalmologists have previously issued guidelines spelling out what skills and experience a surgeon should have, and laying down rules for making sure patients are properly informed before giving consent.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) concluded that laser eye surgery was 'safe and effective' - provided it was performed only on 'appropriately selected patients' and that doctors carrying it out 'ensure that patients understand the benefits and potential risks of the procedure'.
For more information on laser eye surgery and the Visualase approach click here.
All eye surgical procedures carry a level of risk including not obtaining the desired outcome, through to varying levels of visual loss. Your eye surgeon will discuss the risks and benefits, including ones specific to your circumstances, at the time of your pre-operative consultation.