Blog Hero

Who Is a Good Candidate for Laser Eye Surgery?

Book Appointment
A photo of a woman's face and there's a digitally added graphic over her face which circles her eye

If you’re tired of wearing glasses or contact lenses every day or feel like your vision is holding you back from enjoying life to the fullest, laser eye surgery may be the solution you’ve been searching for. Unfortunately, not everyone is a good candidate for this procedure.

Your eye doctor will need to consider factors such as your age, eye health, prescription strength, and lifestyle to determine whether or not you’re a good candidate for laser eye surgery. If you’re curious, a surgical consultation is the best place to start.

What Is Laser Eye Surgery?

Laser eye surgery, also known as refractive surgery, is a common method for correcting refractive error, or a person’s glasses prescription. If you are one of the millions of people with nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism, laser eye surgery may be a great option.

Laser eye surgery uses specialized lasers to reshape the cornea, the transparent dome over the front of your eye, to correct vision problems. There are different types of laser eye surgery, though the 2 common types are:

  • PRK

They both have advantages and disadvantages and choosing the right one for you is a key part of laser eye surgery consultation.

How Does Laser Eye Surgery Work?

Laser eye surgery works by reshaping the cornea to properly focus light onto the retina, which is responsible for transmitting visual signals to the brain. The precise laser used during surgery removes a small amount of tissue from the cornea to reshape its curvature and improve its ability to focus light. This results in clearer vision.

LASIK surgery involves creating a flap in the cornea using a laser or an extremely thin blade. This flap is lifted, and a second laser is used to reshape the cornea. The flap is then replaced, and the eye is left to heal on its own. 

PRK uses slightly different techniques but also focuses on reshaping the cornea. Instead of creating a flap, an entire outer layer of the cornea is removed, and then the laser is used to reshape it.

A female patient prepares for laser eye surgery

Am I A Good Candidate for Laser Eye Surgery?

Your eyes are unique, and a consultation will help your eye doctor determine if refractive surgery is right for you.

Here are some factors that could impact your candidacy for laser eye surgery.


Age is one of the most important factors to consider when determining whether someone is a good candidate for laser eye surgery. You should be at least 18 years old to undergo the procedure, though ideally, a doctor may prefer you to be over 21.

Our vision stabilizes around age 20, and younger people can still experience changes in their eyesight and may not have fully developed eyes. By waiting until a later age, you give yourself the best chance of achieving longer-lasting results from laser eye surgery. 

Eye Health 

To be a good candidate for laser eye surgery, you should have healthy eyes and stable vision, meaning you should have no underlying eye conditions, including glaucoma or cataracts. Some conditions can affect the surgery, while others, such as cataracts, can’t be fixed with refractive surgery.

If you have advanced dry eye, you may not be eligible for the procedure until it has been treated and your eyes have fully healed. Additionally, your corneas need to be thick enough to undergo treatment, though PRK could be an option for thinner corneas.

Prescription Strength & Stability 

Another important factor to consider when determining eligibility for laser eye surgery is the strength of your prescription.

People with high prescriptions may still be eligible for the procedure, but the likelihood of success and vision improvement may decrease. Generally, you should have a stable prescription for at least 2 years before laser eye surgery. 


If you lead an active lifestyle, it’s worth considering how this might impact your candidacy for laser eye surgery. 

While laser eye surgery can be a fantastic option for many people, certain activities may pose a risk during the surgery recovery. Engaging in contact sports or heavy lifting can increase the chances of accidentally damaging your eyes while they are still healing. 

Manage Your Expectations 

It’s essential to have realistic expectations when considering laser eye surgery. While laser eye surgeries have high patient satisfaction and success rates, some people may still have to wear corrective lenses in some situations.

It’s important to discuss potential outcomes and limitations with your doctor and understand that your individual results may vary. 

Explore Your Laser Eye Surgery Options

Laser eye surgery is popular for those who want to rely less on glasses or contact lenses. However, it’s crucial to consult an eye doctor to determine whether you’re a good candidate for the procedure.

Our team at Family Vision Care is here to help you discuss your options and refer you to a trusted surgeon. If you’re curious about laser eye surgery, book a consultation today!

Dr. Jessica DeLuca

Written by Dr. Jessica DeLuca, OD

Dr. Jessica DeLuca received her doctorate at The Ohio State University College of Optometry in 2021 graduating Magna Cum Laude. She also received the 2021 Excellence in Binocular Vision and Pediatrics Award.

She has extensive training in fitting contact lenses, performing diabetic eye exams, as well as managing dry eye, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration. She was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and attended the University of Pittsburgh for her undergraduate education.

Her favorite hobbies include exercising, spending time outdoors, and relaxing with her dog.

More Articles By Dr. Jessica DeLuca, OD

We’re Invested in Your Eyes

Feel confident in the care you receive from our team at Family Vision Care. We’re always looking for improved technology and techniques to take care of your eye health and vision.

A visit to our office is an experience that is thorough and efficient. We take care of the whole family from 5 years old and up with comprehensive services, including eye exams, contact lens fittings, dry eye therapy, eye disease management, and more. 

Find your next pair of unique frames to suit your style with the help of our friendly and professional team. Look, feel, and see your best!

Is it time for your next eye exam? Visit us today!

Our Locations


We’re located at the corner of State Street and Holmes Avenue next to the United States Post Office.

  • 400 State St.
  • Baden, PA 15005


Find us on Robinhood Drive, just off Rochester Road. If you have any trouble finding us, feel free to give us a call.

  • 4 Robinhood Dr.
  • Cranberry Township, PA 16066

Mt. Oliver

Find us on Brownsville Road across from the Firehouse. Give us a call if you have any trouble locating our office.

  • 119 Brownsville Rd.
  • Pittsburgh, PA 15210


Located in the Pine Center Plaza, 11279 Perry Highway

  • 11279 Perry Hwy Suite 309
  • Wexford, PA 15090
instagram facebook facebook2 pinterest twitter google-plus google linkedin2 yelp youtube phone location calendar share2 link star-full star star-half chevron-right chevron-left chevron-down chevron-up envelope fax