Texas Optometry Board
False/Misleading Advertising
Advertising LASIK success in terms of Snellen visual acuity (i.e. 20/20, 20/15, etc) is false advertising. As many post LASIK victims now know, visual acuity does not give an accurate indication of vision quality. A post LASIK patient can often times have 20/20 visual acuity in a well lit examination room, yet have halos, starbursts, double or multiple vision, glare, blur, etc in dim or dark lighting conditions. This type of advertisement is often used to dupe unsuspecting patients into consenting to surgery. If these doctors were honest, the would use a quantitative approach such as posting wafefront error results before and after LASIK. You won't find anyone doing this because most post surgical eyes will not have an improved wavefront error. Many show increases in higher order aberrations (HOAs). This allows doctors to claim outcomes such as mine and many others were a success when patients who are stuck with damaged vision would disagree. I can assure you that you do not want my vision.
Screen capture taken from the First Eye Care Dallas website in 2011
The below images courtesy of lasikcomplications.com illustrate variations of 20/20 vision after LASIK. I have experienced or still experience many of the complications shown on the website. Would you consider any of the four images a success? This is how your LASIK doctor defines success in terms of visual acuity. I had many appointments with Dr. Ballard, OD where he told me to "Guess the letters" while I struggled to make out the eye chart. Turns out he used the guessed letters to claim success and noted my vision as 20/20 in a number of my records.
This is how the eye chart appeared to me prior to having LASIK. Everything was clear and sharp with my disposable soft contact lenses.
Many post LASIK victims, inlcuding myself, now see the chart much differently. Below are examples of how an eye chart can appear after LASIK. Your doctor may consider these results a successful outcome. My doctors did.
Below is a screen capture taken from the First Eye Care Dallas website in August 2011. They have made numerous false and unsubstantiated claims, including: (1) Claiming that the vision correction is permanent. Numerous studies show that many post LASIK patients will require the use of glasses due to regression. (2) Advertising LASIK success in terms of visual accuity such as 20/20. As previously shown, visual acuity does not indicate the quality of vision or the absence of numerous vision complications such as glare, halos, double vision, starbursts, etc. (3) Claiming that the eximer laser has been proven safe and effective for treatment of most prescription. They fail to disclose any risks. (5) They fail to disclose a very significant difference between LASIK and PRK. With LASIK the corneal tissue on the flap side no longer contributes to the structural integrity of the eye. The interface of the flap to the underlying tissue never heals in the sense that the general public interprets the word "Heal".

Dr. Ballard and Dr. Taub never disclosed to me that the corneal flap interface never heals, leaving me at risk for accidental flap dislocation and other complications for the rest of my life! This should be treated as battery and they should be thrown in prison. Failure to disclose such a serious side effect that every single LASIK patient experiences should be a criminal offense with mandatory prison time. This side effect put an immediate end in my ability to participate in boxing. For $3,500 Dr. Ballard and Dr. Taub chose to steal my ability to participate in the sports and hobbies I enjoyed. For the rest of my life I will be unable to pursue my hobbies. There is absolutely no valid reason to withhold such information. These greedy individuals placed their financial gain before patient safety. Dr. Taub stated on numerous occasions that LASIK does not weaken the structure of the cornea. This was a lie! If you have had LASIK and your doctor(s) did not disclose this risk to you then you should sue them immediately for permanent injuries! Just because you can see well and are happy with your vision now does not mean you have not been permanently injured.

Below is one of many studies demonstrating the permanent weakening and damage to the cornea after LASIK.