Calendar Icon
Request an Appointment
LASIK Self-Test

Why LASK May Not Be Right For You If You Have Dry Eyes

Have you been thinking about getting LASIK for years? Do you have dry eye syndrome?

When you are talking with your eye doctor about getting LASIK, one factor that’s considered is if you have dry eyes. To have LASIK and safely recover from it, you need to have healthy eyes. Keep reading to find out why LASIK may not be right for you if you have dry eyes!

What Causes Dry Eye To Develop?

People can develop dry eye for a variety of reasons. When patients have dry eyes, it’s usually because they are making low-quality tears or they are overproducing tears.

Some of the causes include health conditions or specific environments. One of the most common causes of dry eye for patients who want LASIK is wearing contact lenses!

Patients who use contact lenses frequently find that their eyes are dry and irritated. This is one of the reasons people with contacts want LASIK.

Some patients do not even know they have dry eye until they are being evaluated for LASIK eye surgery. Once patients know they have dry eye, they can often treat it and then be a good candidate for LASIK.

Dry Eye Screening

During the process of determining LASIK candidacy, your eyes will be tested and screened. The quality and quantity of your tears affects how you recover after LASIK.

This means that managing your dry eye is very important. The different tests your doctor will perform include:

Tear Breakup Time:

A tiny amount of dye is placed on your eye so your doctor can see how tears distribute and move across the surface of your eyes.

Schirmer Test:

A small piece of paper is placed under your lower eyelid to test your tear production.


Instruments like a keratometer give your doctor a clear view of your tear film without needing to touch your eye.

MMP-9 Testing:

Your doctor will gather a tiny amount of your tears from your bottom eyelid. Your doctor will look to see if you have elevated protein levels.

This can indicate that you’ll develop conditions like dry eye after having LASIK. This procedure is painless.

If You Have Dry Eye, Get It Under Control Before LASIK

If your doctor discovers that you have dry eye, you shouldn’t get LASIK until your symptoms are under control. Most patients with dry eye have no idea that they have it.

For most patients with dry eye, they can get LASIK once their dry eye and related symptoms are being managed. It is important that you treat your dry eye before LASIK because it can make existing dry eye symptoms worse.

One of the most common side effects of LASIK is dry eye. This is why you need to have your dry eye symptoms under control before having LASIK.

Are you ready to learn more about getting LASIK? Schedule a LASIK consultation at South Texas Eye Institute in San Antonio, TX now!

This is the only way to know if you’re a good candidate for LASIK and if visual freedom could be yours!