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HealthInfo Waitaha Canterbury

Surgery to improve vision (refractive surgery)

Pokanga e whakapai ai i te tirohanga (pokanga hakoko)

Surgery that aims to remove or reduce your need for glasses or contact lenses is called refractive surgery.

This type of surgery changes the shape of the front layer of your eye (the cornea), replaces your natural lens or adds an extra focusing lens into your eye. Refractive surgery can be used for long-sightedness (hyperopia), short sightedness (myopia) and astigmatism.

Laser surgery

Laser surgery changes the way your eye focuses by reshaping your cornea (the top layer of your eye), using a specially designed laser. There are three types of laser refractive surgery.

Intraocular lenses (IOLs)

There are two forms of refractive surgery that involve putting a new lens in your eye (intraocular lenses).

Written by Canterbury optometrists. Adapted by HealthInfo clinical advisers. Last reviewed March 2023.


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