Eye surgery? My view

Squeamishness is relative. I am unfazed by childbirth, urinary catheters and vomit. I am less good with injuries to the ends of fingers or toes, which always make me want to look away. My biggest fear, however, is of eyes.

Operative ophthalmology, in particular, sets me on edge – the eyelid clamped back, the surrounds of the eye draped to keep the area clean and, all the while, the conscious eye watching the approach of the surgeon’s hand. But not everyone is troubled by this prospect. Indeed, a number of FT readers have asked me about laser eye surgery – whether it really works, and what, if any, are the complications?

The information about laser eye surgery on the Royal College of Ophthalmologists’ website gives a useful overview. Laser eye surgery is not suitable for all spectacle-wearers, and some may still have to wear glasses either post-op or at a later stage. Surgery is also expensive – the bill can run to many thousands of pounds.

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A forum on healthcare policy and professional issues, by Glasgow-based GP and FT Weekend columnist Margaret McCartney.

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