Normally prices decrease as technology improves and becomes more mainstream, so why are laser eye surgery prices getting more expensive?
Just like with almost anything in capitalistic American society, laser eye surgery prices also vary according to provider expertise, sophistication of technique used, area of operation and other such factors. While many vision correction centers can boast of incredibly low laser eye surgery prices, it is in the client’s best interest to read all the fine print and find out if there are any hidden charges and extras which might not be included in the advertised price.
As always, the mantra of ‘You get what you paid for’ holds true here as well. You wouldn’t want to short change your eyesight to save a few hundred dollars and therefore carefully make your surgeon selection and do not base it solely on laser eye surgery prices.
Industry Price Averages for Laser Eye Surgery
Although exact prices fluctuate, it is safe to say that in the years 2006 and 2007, laser eye surgery prices for one eye were mostly in the range of $1500 to $2500. Around 67 per cent of cases fell in that range so it is a good guesstimate by all standards. However, remember that these prices are per eye so if you plan on getting both eyes corrected, then you have to double the quoted rate.
People find it hard to understand why laser eye surgery prices have risen over the past few years. Usually, prices fall as technology improves and becomes more widespread. However the reason why laser eye surgery prices have risen, albeit marginally, is because of new, customized techniques available such as wavefront laser eye surgery. This offers a more complex yet precise procedure and is not a one size fits all. Hence, the laser eye surgery prices for such a technique are higher and because more people are opting for this customization, industry averages have risen too.
Laser eye surgery prices also vary by region. For example, the cost of laser eye surgery in Pennsylvania will likely differ from the cost of laser eye surgery in California.
Another factor why prices have risen is that many surgeons are opting for laser beams to lift the flap of the cornea rather than a blade-like instrument. Called IntraLase, this procedure uses a laser rather than the blade called microkeratome. For instance, opting for the IntraLase raises the laser eye surgery price per eye by around $350 but patients feel it is well worth it as surgeons have reported fewer infections and flap complications by using this procedure.
Financing Laser Surgery
If $2000 an eye seems like a daunting figure especially since insurance companies do not usually cover cosmetic procedures, find out if the centers you are considering offer financing options. Many places try to combat rising laser eye surgery prices by offering no interest or no payments deferred financing to lure patients in. See if you qualify and if a small monthly payment can help you attain your dreams of a spectacle-free life.