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Choosing a LASIK Surgeon in Western NY

choosing a lasik surgeon

Just like any other medical decision, choosing your LASIK surgeon is a big deal. For some, this can be a daunting task, but when you’re prepared with some simple questions to ask and have some research under your belt, you can feel confident and excited for your LASIK procedure. Here are some things to look for when choosing a LASIK surgeon.

Certifications and Experience

Certifications and experience  are typically what patients look for first, and for good reason! It’s important to know how experienced your surgeon is and how dedicated they are to their practice. Here are five questions you can ask about their experience:

1. How many years have you been in practice and how many procedures have you performed?

How long the surgeon has been in practice helps you understand their experience and commitment to their patients. Also ask how many procedures on average they have performed. If you know what procedure you are needing, it’s okay to get specific. For LASIK, you should look for a doctor who has performed at least 5,000 procedures.

Our surgeons have over 40 years of experience and have performed over 90,000 surgical procedures combined. This includes 60,000 refractive surgeries such as LASIK, making them the most experienced team in the region.

2. Do you use the latest advanced technology?

The variety of procedures and lasers the surgeon has access to is important because not everyone is a candidate for LASIK. For some, another solution may be best. If your surgeon is proficient in the latest techniques and has access to advanced lasers, you can rest assured that they can provide the best option for your eyes.

3. Does your surgeon LIVE in the area?

Another thing to look for when choosing your LASIK surgeon is finding out if they are local. Some LASIK centers have their surgeons fly in-and-out of town, often two days a week, for procedures. This can make it difficult to get a hold of them if there are any complications. All our surgeons here at Fichte Endl & Elmer Eyecare live right here in Niagara or Erie County. We also have on-call operators 24/7 should a need arise.

Founder Dr. Claus Fichte started out with only three employees in 1985. Together with his two partners Michael J. Endl MD & Thomas R. Elmer Jr. MD they have grown the practice to include 2 offices and a freestanding Ambulatory Surgery Center. Between the three locations, they employ over 74 people, some of which have been in the organization 20, 25 and even more than 30 years.

4. What are your success rates?

In the field of ophthalmology, we measure success by enhancement rates for refractive surgeries. Fichte Endl and Elmer’s enhancement rate is at 3%, meaning 97 out of 100 patients walk out of surgery without needing a touch-up.  Learn more information about LASIK enhancements to help you gauge success rates.

5. Are you a Board Certified Surgeon?

Dr.’s Fichte, Endl, and Elmer are all board-certified surgeons, meaning they uphold the latest standards. They have all been certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology (ABOP). Read more about board certifications in our interview with ABOP’s Executive Director, John Clarkson.

Lastly, do a little research. Ask your family and friends who they had their LASIK procedure with. Word of mouth is the number one referral source at Fichte, Endl & Elmer Eyecare. Read social media reviews and check their reputation for yourself. Be sure to look for reviews that are up-to-date and mention the surgeon or staff specifically, rather than the more general LASIK reviews.

When making decisions about your eyesight, we want you to make the best decision. We hope that by asking these questions, you can reach the level of confidence and trust that you’ve chosen the right LASIK surgeon for your eyes. If you have any questions about our surgeons, please give us a call at 1-800-309-2020 and we’ll be more than happy to answer them.


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