Beyond the Price Tag: The Value of Vision Correction Surgery

is LASIK worth it

If you are thinking about vision correction with a procedure like LASIK, SMILE, ICL – or any of today’s options – it is natural to weigh the expense within the totality of your finances and ask yourself: Is it truly worth it? In this article, we will explore what an investment in a vision correction surgery might mean for you in today’s economy. We’ll start with LASIK. To begin, let’s start with these facts:

Today’s Economy

The news is full of stories discussing the success of the economy at a macro level, but the reality is most folks aren’t feeling the benefits of it in their wallets. Everyday expenses – gas, food, rent – are much more expensive than they used to be just a few years ago, which leads most people to keep an eye out for value in their purchases.

People who need glasses or contacts to see well have additional line items in their budget.  The expense of contact lenses has many young adults finding creative ways to pay for them with recent reports of a 450+ percent increase in the use of “buy now pay later” options when purchasing contacts. Eyeglasses have a reputation for being expensive for several reasons including one company dominating the manufacturing and marketing of frames (Pro Tip: Brand name frames are a bit of a scam – look for ones that look good on you, period).

However, there is one ray of light in the vision correction economic landscape: laser vision correction. Despite significant fluctuations in inflation, the price of LASIK has remained relatively stable for the past 10 years. In fact, it is estimated that today’s LASIK is approximately 20 percent less expensive than it was just ten years ago.

The LASIK Value Proposition

In 2008, the cost of LASIK was approximately $4,0002, but in today’s dollars, that would be closer to $5,700. However, today the average price of LASIK is about $4,492 – which includes the advanced technologies developed since 2008. The price of other vision correction procedures including PRK, SMILE, and ICL have also remained stable.

Vision Correction Procedures Are An Investment

LASIK, SMILE, and ICL procedures are a one-time expense that can reduce or eliminate the need to spend on glasses and contacts – for years.  Beyond the expense, LASIK and these other vision correction procedures allow people to see without the inconvenience both glasses and contacts can represent, not just in daily life but in the enjoyment of experiences in travel, hobbies, and activities.

Innovation Increases LASIK Value

While the price of LASIK hasn’t changed significantly, there has been a tremendous amount of innovation that has gone into today’s advanced LASIK technologies – making what was already a very good procedure even safer and with better visual outcomes.

Today’s LASIK treatment profiles are significantly more precise, achieving 20/20 vision for more than 90 percent of patients and more than 50 percent achieving better than 20/20 (think 20/16, 20/15, or even 20/12). This precision translates into an even higher safety record. LASIK’s exceptional safety is further supported with more advanced diagnostic technology. These technologies not only guide a more customized vision correction procedure but also provide valuable information to surgeons to help screen out those patients who aren’t good candidates for LASIK. These advancements in vision correction procedures have expanded the options making it possible for more people to be candidates for one or more vision correction procedures.

Vision Correction Innovation Beyond LASIK

While LASIK is the best-known and most popular vision correction procedure, the science of vision correction has produced several procedures for those who are interested in moving beyond their glasses and contacts. These procedures incorporate the latest advancements in laser and lens technologies and offer surgeons choices to help customize a recommendation for vision correction to the needs of each individual patient. Importantly, these options in vision correction procedures mean patients who may not be eligible for LASIK, may be candidates for a different type of vision correction procedure. Generally speaking, vision correction procedures are recommended for adults in good health, without a history of eye injury or disease, and stable prescription.

Is LASIK Worth it? Yes

Naturally, people place a high value on good vision. For those without it, a lifetime of glasses and contact lenses represents an expensive compromise in terms of vision, budget, and lifestyle. For those reasons, many look into vision correction procedures as a way to reduce their lifetime expense and get the benefit of great vision without glasses and contacts. If you are wondering if LASIK or one of the many options in vision correction surgery is worth it for you and your vision, your best first step is to find a highly qualified surgeon to evaluate your eye and vision health, discuss your lifestyle goals, and determine which procedure might be right from there. From there, a personalized recommendation can be made based on your specific needs using today’s latest vision correction technologies.

Evaluating the worth of vision correction procedures in your personal finances is an important part of the decision-making process. Discussing the prices of the various options with your surgeon, factoring in any savings insurance and tax-exempt accounts may provide, along with other ways to pay for the procedure, can help make sure your choice is an informed one. Click here to find a surgeon near you.

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Published March 27, 2024
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