What kind of RLE results can I expect?

Maybe you have an idea of what refractive lens exchange is, but you're still not sure what it does. Here’s what’s involved when we expect the expected for RLE.

Joel Hunter, MD
Joel Hunter, MD
Refractive Surgeon, Hunter Vision Updated 10/31/18 11:34 AM

Sometimes during a consultation, the question will be asked, “Will this make it so I don’t need glasses for reading?” And I like the question. I like it for its simple, straightforward honesty. It is a way to cut through all the explanation and descriptions I’m giving and just get to the point. I also like this question because it has an answer that’s fun to give. If I thought RLE wasn’t going to get you out of reading glasses, then it would just mean you’re not a candidate for RLE.

This simple question, “Will this get me out of glasses?” feels to me how I’d feel in any similar situation with a different subject matter. If someone was going on and on about the specific features of a grill, my main question would be, “Will this grill burgers?” The guy who loves grills enough to know every feature of this one would probably have the same reaction I do. It makes you stop and consider how the main point is sometimes the only point. Yes, it’ll grill food. It’s the whole reason the grill exists. Yes, it’ll get you out of glasses. It’s the whole reason RLE exists.

What does RLE do?

The results you can expect from RLE are that you won’t need glasses for distance vision or for near vision. Otherwise, there’s no point to the surgery. Are there variations on what that looks like for different people? Absolutely. If everyone has unique fingerprints, you can bet they have unique eyes too. But part of the wonderful advancement in technology allowing RLE to exist is our ability to describe those specifics beforehand rather than waiting to see the result then explaining it. The conversations are varied, but the baseline is always the same. We’re talking about this because both of us should expect you to have glasses independence for near and distance vision.

Expect the expected

You may have started reading this with the intent of finding out what you can expect specifically. The good news is those kinds of answers exist. It’s just that detailed answers require detailed testing. I have this fear of writing all this out only to have it seem like a long advertisement to say, “...so call today and schedule an appointment to find out!” That being said, to know what you personally can expect from RLE, a consult still is the way to find out—whether it makes this blog look like an advertisement or not (it isn’t).

While the details vary, the idea behind all of them is the same. The purpose of RLE is to make it so you don’t need glasses both to read and to see far away. Until that main expectation is set correctly, none of the details matter in the first place. I wouldn’t expect anyone to sit through a personalized consultation about RLE if we couldn’t expect getting out of glasses. I know I’d never sit through a grill explanation if I got the wrong answer to my question about whether it would grill burgers. Priorities are important.

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