Laser eye surgery during pregnancy

The hormonal changes in the body during pregnancy are very drastic. These changes often cause annoying ailments. Morning sickness and mood swings are among the well known pregnancy ailments. What most people don’t know, however, is that these changes in hormone levels can also lead to changes in the eyesight.

Causes of the eye changes during pregnancy and breastfeeding

Eye problems during pregnancy are a consequence of hormonal changes, the metabolism or changes in the blood pressure. In general, these eye problems automatically disappear after the birth or after stopping the breastfeeding.

What kind of eye problems can appear?

Many women suffer from dry eyes during pregnancy. This is due to the fact that pregnancy hormones cause a decrease in tear fluid. Because of this decrease, some pregnant women are having problems with wearing contact lenses, for example. Therefore, it is often recommended to wear glasses during pregnancy instead of contact lenses.
As the body is retaining water during pregnancy, the thickness and shape of the cornea might change. This may cause a decline in eyesight or a blurred vision. Some women are suffering during pregnancy from the changes in eyesight. As a result, the glasses they are wearing may not be completely adapted to their eyes anymore. Recently, publiced a nice overview of the eye changes that can be caused by pregnancy. 

Why a laser eye surgery should be avoided during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

The laser eye surgery itself cannot cause any harm during pregnancy. There is no danger whatsoever for the unborn child. However, this doesn’t mean that it is a good idea. Laser eye surgery is never recommended during pregnancy or breastfeeding because it is impossible to execute it with the same high precision as normal.

A pregnancy has a negative influence on the level of tears in the eyes. Pregnant women often suffer from dry eyes. This might hinder the course of the recovery process after the intervention. Therefore, it will be more difficult to predict the results of the operation. Furthermore, laser eye surgery is not recommended during pregnancy and breastfeeding because the temporary changes in the visual strength of the eyes make it impossible to precisely determine the “real” visual strength. The result of the intervention will be better when it is postponed until after the birth or until after the breastfeeding. 

When is a laser eye surgery possible again? 

It is recommended to wait at least 3 months after the pregnancy to execute a laser eye surgery. In general, it is assumed that it takes about 3 months for the hormone levels to return back to normal. After this period, the eye problems due to the pregnancy should be resolved as well. So, laser eye surgery is perfectly possible after 3 months. In case of breastfeeding, it is recommended to wait until after the end of the breastfeeding. 

Women who are planning to get pregnant and who are considering a laser eye surgery, best make an appointment before the actual pregnancy. In this way, a comparison of the eyesight can be made before and after the pregnancy.

Would you like more information about eye problems during pregnancy? Would you like to have your eyes tested before the pregnancy in order to find out if laser eye surgery is an option for you? Feel free to contact us, without any obligation.