What Goes Into LASIK Candidacy?

What Goes Into LASIK Candidacy?

June 10th, 2021
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Everyone wants better eyesight, and many people look to surgery to permanently improve their vision. LASIK is the most popular option for correcting nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism.

But getting LASIK is not as straightforward as you may think. There are many criteria and requirements that you need to meet to receive LASIK.

Some people do not qualify for LASIK, but you have a few options if you do not qualify. For example, you can wait until you do meet the requirements.

Or, you can take action to change what is disqualifying you or find other ways to correct your vision. Keep reading to learn more about LASIK candidacy and find out if you are a good candidate.

LASIK Candidacy Requirements

LASIK has an extensive candidacy requirement list. You must meet all these requirements to be a LASIK candidate.


You must be at least 18 years old for LASIK, according to the FDA. But many doctors will wait until you are at least in your mid to late twenties to perform LASIK on you.

That’s because your eyes are still developing until you are almost thirty. If your eyes change after you undergo LASIK, it could ruin the results of your procedure.

Eye Stability

For the same reason you need to be in your twenties, your vision must be stable for at least a year. Unstable vision can make the surgery ineffective or leave you with worse vision than before.

You must be able to prove that your vision has not changed for at least 12 months, if not more. If your eyes are changing, you jeopardize your LASIK results.

Healthy Eyes

You must have healthy eyes to undergo LASIK. It is a safe procedure, but your eyes still need to recover afterward.

There are incisions made in your corneas in LASIK. So if your eyes are already unhealthy, you will be at a much higher risk of complications from the procedure.

General Health

You must be healthy in general for LASIK. Certain diseases like autoimmune disorders, diabetes, and more can make your recovery difficult.

Corneal Thickness

Your corneas have to be a certain thickness for LASIK. This is because LASIK removes corneal tissue to correct your vision. Some people have thinner corneas than others and don’t have enough tissue to work with.

You Are Not Pregnant

You cannot be pregnant or nursing when you undergo LASIK. This is because pregnancy hormones can cause your eye prescription to change the same way young developing eyes can shift. These changes can make the results of your procedure less predictable.

You Follow Your Eye Doctor’s Instructions

You must be willing to listen to your surgeon. A successful LASIK procedure relies on you following the guidelines given to you by your eye doctor.

Most complications that occur from LASIK happen during the early stages of recovery. So be sure to take all the instructions and advice to heart as you begin healing. 

Your eye doctor will help you determine if you are a LASIK candidate during your LASIK consultation. If you are not, they will help you find the LASIK alternative that is right for you.

Why is LASIK Candidacy So Strict?

LASIK candidacy is strict to ensure that only people who have the best chances of success can get it. This protects you from complications and gives you the best possible chance of a successful procedure.

Even if you don’t fit all the criteria for LASIK right now, you may only need to wait for a while, while you fix or control other issues. You can also seek an alternative procedure that may suit you better.

Schedule a LASIK consultation at Laser Eye Center in Huntsville, AL, today! Come find out if LASIK is right for you!