How Much Does LASIK Eye Surgery Cost?
LASIK eye surgery, also known as laser eye surgery, is a type of vision correction surgery that helps fix myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. Having this surgery can be life-changing, giving you the freedom to do things that you couldn’t do previously. In some cases, LASIK is required for certain career paths.
Regardless of your reasons for wanting to get LASIK, questions about the cost of the procedure may be holding you back from following through. Here, we explain how much LASIK eye surgery costs.
Table of Contents
- 1 Average Cost of LASIK Eye Surgery
- 2 What if I Can’t Afford LASIK?
- 3 Should I Do LASIK Surgery in a Different Country?
- 4 Does Recovery Time Affect the Cost of LASIK?
Average Cost of LASIK Eye Surgery
The average cost for LASIK can be anywhere from $250 to $4,000 per eye. Below, we break down the details that may affect the cost of LASIK.
Does My Insurance Cover LASIK Eye Surgery?
- Most health insurance companies don’t cover the cost of LASIK, but some offer discounts for the procedure. Ask your insurance provider if they offer a courtesy discount on LASIK and what specific requirements need to be met to receive the discount. They may require that you see a specific doctor, as most major providers work directly with LASIK doctors to offer these discounted rates.
- In some cases, if the LASIK procedure is necessary as opposed to elective, insurance may cover the cost. Most often, this happens with members of the military, first responders, and law enforcement.
- If insurance doesn’t cover LASIK, there are a variety of financing options available that allow you to fit the procedure into your budget. Additionally, you can look into Health Savings Accounts (HSA) or a Flexible Spending Account (FSA), each of which allows you to save for medical needs on a pre-tax basis.
Where You Live Can Affect Your Cost
According to TLC Laser Eye Centers, where you live can affect how much your LASIK procedure costs. If your location has high rent, gas, and utilities, then chances are your surgery will cost more too.
Surgeon’s Experience and Quality
The surgeon, the facility, and the type of procedure you opt for will greatly impact the cost of your LASIK procedure. Experienced LASIK eye surgeons will cost more than doctors who have performed fewer surgeries because the former are in high demand and come with a wealth of expertise. Research the best surgeons in your area to learn more about their experience and the quality of their service.
The cost of the procedure also varies, especially if it is a customized surgery. LASIK is offered using traditional or laser methods:
- Traditional LASIK: This is one of the most cost-effective surgery options. A microkeratome blade is used to cut the corneal flap instead of laser technology, greatly decreasing the cost of the procedure.
- Custom Wavefront LASIK: Wavefront technology measures and maps the surface of the eye. This data is uploaded into a LASIK excimer laser that will perform a more accurate vision correction based on a patient’s custom eye measurements.
What if I Can’t Afford LASIK?
If you can’t afford the cost of LASIK, don’t give up quite yet. Check with your local LASIK surgery office to see if they offer any kind of financing. Most LASIK offices offer payment plans that create manageable monthly payments for budgets of all kinds. Additionally, many LASIK offices offer a discount if payments are made upfront and in cash.
Should I Do LASIK Surgery in a Different Country?
Many people travel abroad for their LASIK procedure because of the discounted rates. Before you book a trip for LASIK, understand the different risks that may come with getting LASIK eye surgery in a different country.
Is LASIK Abroad Right for You?
Regardless of where your LASIK is performed, it’s about finding a reputable surgeon that you trust. Research the facility and reach out to them to ask questions about how the procedure is performed. In some cases, the lower price tag may mean less experienced surgeons.
Different Countries and Their Costs
If you travel to another country for LASIK, the cost of the procedure could be one-third of what you would pay in the United States. Because the cost of living is relatively low, European countries like the Czech Republic and Hungary offer extremely affordable LASIK eye surgery.
Here are the approximate costs of LASIK in the various countries:
- Poland: $760;
- India: $850;
- Germany: $1,075;
- Thailand: $1,110;
- Spain: $1,170;
- Mexico: $1,500;
- UAE: $2,675;
- USA: $2,500;
- UK: $1,700;
- Canada $2100;
The cost of the procedure may be significantly less in another country, but the added expenses can ultimately cost you more in the long run. Consider additional costs like flights, accommodations, and time away from work. Additionally, follow-up appointments may mean additional travel time and expenses. Consider these added costs when comparing the prices of national and international LASIK procedures.
The health regulations in other countries tend to be less strict. There are a few risks that come with getting LASIK abroad:
- Surgeons approved to perform LASIK in foreign clinics don’t have to pass as many checks as a surgeon would in the United States.
- You’re unable to meet with your surgeon face-to-face prior to the procedure.
- The surgeon may speak English, but the other faculty members may not.
- The healthcare regulations in that country may be less strict than others, leaving the patient disappointed with the care they receive.
- How you receive aftercare may require additional travel and expense.
Does Recovery Time Affect the Cost of LASIK?
The cost of recovery time depends on the type of procedure you have and how well it goes. If the recovery time is too long, then this means you are having to take more time than anticipated off of work, which means you aren’t getting paid. This can also mean more medications if you are in pain. Or, you may need to go back to fix a mistake that the surgeon made.
The cost of LASIK depends on the type of procedure, your insurance provider, and where you choose to undergo the procedure. You may want to look into alternatives if you aren’t able to afford LASIK or are thinking about getting the procedure abroad.
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This post was updated November 25, 2019. It was originally published November 25, 2019.