Army Lasik vs. Regular Lasik?

Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by Chockstock, Jan 17, 2010.

  1. Chockstock

    Chockstock "Forever One Team"

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    731
    Likes Received:
    8
    I decided to make this a separate thread because I feel its important...

    I made a thread in another forum here about the possible risks of LASIK and wanted to ask anyone here if they've done LASIK after joining the military/entering USMA and if there are any side effects/negative things about the surgery. It would be a dream come true to be able to see perfectly without glasses or contacts, but Im not willing to put my eyeballs on the line for possible complications/problems. I've read and heard about horror stories of people finding themselves in deep sh*t after their LASIK surgeries messed their vision up. Is Army LASIK safer?
     
  2. 11BRAVO

    11BRAVO Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2009
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    0
    What is Army Lasik?
     
  3. x-ImPuLse-PL-

    x-ImPuLse-PL- Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2010
    Messages:
    91
    Likes Received:
    0
    I believe it's LASIK eye surgery, but done/offered through the Army itself, instead of an outside company.
     
  4. America's Finest

    America's Finest USMA Cadet

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    Messages:
    1,588
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't think there is a difference in physical safety, however, if you get it on your own it may disqualify you from certain things.
     
  5. 11BRAVO

    11BRAVO Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2009
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    0
    I had two wisdom teeth pulled by an army dentist and I must say, if army eye surgeons are anything like army dentists I'd be a little concerned LOL
     
  6. marciemi

    marciemi USMA Alumnus

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    Messages:
    1,481
    Likes Received:
    0
    I was going to say that as far as OB/GYN's were concerned. Had my first son in a military hospital (while I was still in the Army). Had son #2 in a civilian hospital. Let's just say that if I'd known I had to have my next baby in a military hospital, son #3 wouldn't be here today! :wink:
     
  7. 2010

    2010 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2010
    Messages:
    49
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well, if you did get LASIK done through the Army, would you be able to get it done while you're at WP?
     
  8. Chockstock

    Chockstock "Forever One Team"

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    731
    Likes Received:
    8
    Doesn't that mean that LASIK provided by the Army is somehow different from LASIK you could get from a private surgeon?
     
  9. FaithfulMom

    FaithfulMom Member

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2009
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think you are refering to PRK, when you say "Army Lasik"?

    Someone will have to help us out here, but from what I've read, the Service Academies do PRK and not regular LASIK vision surgery (google search LASIK vs. PRK for the difference). Also, I think either of them can only be done after you are 20 years old and the surgery needs to be done by military doctors when you are at a service academy; they give their approval and oversee that everything is done according to their requirements.
     
  10. KWpilot

    KWpilot New Member

    Joined:
    May 30, 2009
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Chockstock-
    My info is probably dated, but as of a few years ago they were cycling cadets through the hospital up there for both LASIK, PRK, and LASEK (there are differences b/w all 3 procedures). The number of cadets they could do in a year varied with their budget and equipment available, and you weren't considered eligible until your Cow year though. Eye surgery (done through either the Army or on the civilian side) does disqualify you from some things, HOWEVER like many things in the Army, you can get a waiver. That being said, you're young and the rules/regs are always changing, so I would not be in any kind of rush. When I started out, eye surgery was a total disqualifier for branching Aviation. Then, the rules changed a few years later, so you never know.
     
  11. Chockstock

    Chockstock "Forever One Team"

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    731
    Likes Received:
    8
    Alright...but waiting three years seems like a long time :(

    Does the Army approve of those contacts that correct your vision while you sleep? I believe they're called ortho-K, and they somehow "massage" your eyeballs while you sleep and when you take them off in the morning, you have perfect vision.
     
  12. FaithfulMom

    FaithfulMom Member

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2009
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    Chockstock, I have found this listed as one of the vision disqualifiers on an old posting:
    • Refractive error corrected by orthokeratology, kerato-refractive, PRK, laser, or any other corneal enhancement.

    From the DoDMERB website list of disqualifiers:
    "D155.90 Spectacle discomfort/ghost images/prismatic displacement/orthokeratology
    If ordinary spectacles cause discomfort by reason of ghost images or prismatic displacement; or if corrected by orthokeratology "

    However, the following is stated on the Eye Examination Form:
    "APPLICANT ONLY INSTRUCTIONS: If you wear contact lenses they must be removed prior to examination; 3 days for soft contacts and 21 days for hard/rigid gas permeable contacts. Additionally, if you wear rigid lenses as part of ortho-keratology or corneal refractive therapy, they must be removed for a period of 90 days prior to the examination. Please note that NO INTERMITTENT USE of your contact lenses is allowed during the period that they are to be removed. A SIGNED STATEMENT REGARDING THE TYPE OF CONTACTS (SOFT, HARD, etc.) YOU WEAR AND HOW MANY DAYS THEY WERE REMOVED PRIOR TO THIS EXAM MUST BE INCLUDED IN THIS REPORT. "

    Before discovering that ortho-k contact lenses appear to be a DQ factor, we discussed this option with my son's optometrist. They are very expensive and essentially work like braces on your teeth but the correction can be undone if you stop wearing them (varies by patient). Perhaps that is why they have to be removed for 90 days before your DoDMERB eye exam - to give enough time for your corneas to return to their natural shape and give your most accurate uncorrected vision results. Also, with not being allowed to wear contacts during Beast/Plebe Summer, any correction could possibly be reversed during that time as well and you might end up needing a new prescription.

    I have no idea about whether ortho-k lenses would be allowed once the academic year begins.

    I would advise you to contact Larry Mullen on the DoDMERB forum for the specifics on these special lenses and when/if they are allowed.
     
  13. mmb5

    mmb5 Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2009
    Messages:
    321
    Likes Received:
    11
    Faithfulmom, any word on a waiver for your son?
     
  14. 11BRAVO

    11BRAVO Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2009
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    0
    Chock,
    it seems many of your questions are designed to determine if military school and life in the military can be as comfortable and civilian-esque as possible. I would say that life at WP and in the military are better than ever but you will need to start understanding that the military life is a tough life for most. Of course this depends a lot on which career path you choose but just about every career field will experience some level of hardship. There are little things that can define life in the army, such as umbrellas are not authorized while in a military uniform because they are not part of your basic issue. And there are big things like you might have guard duty on Christmas Day and there's nothing you can do about it. A committment to the Army means sacrificing a lot. As a leader you will always out your troops before your own needs. When you are in the field, your troops eat first. If they run out of chow the LT goes hungry. This is the mindset you need to start learning if you plan to lead others in the army.
     
  15. KWpilot

    KWpilot New Member

    Joined:
    May 30, 2009
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well put, 11B. That being said, if you get into that mindset, it can be a rewarding and satisfying career path...
     
  16. FaithfulMom

    FaithfulMom Member

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2009
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    mmb5, my son has to go and have some further vision tests at a Military Treatment Facility on Friday and then we will wait to hear whether he is granted a waiver, or not.

    Thanks for asking - we're still hanging in there...
     
  17. Chockstock

    Chockstock "Forever One Team"

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    731
    Likes Received:
    8
    Thanks for the advice FaithfulMom, but I was asking about the surgery itself and the surgery administered AFTER enrollment at USMA. I've already been medically qualified by DODMERB:smile:


    Yes, to a degree. But it would be more accurate to say that I'm trying to find a balance between the two. I know ARMY life won't be cushiony. I'm just trying to figure out the sides of ACADEMY life. I know I would be missing out on a "normal" college experience (something that I was reaaally looking forward too all high school...until I considered applying to WP) and I'm trying to see what exactly I'll be giving up and what I won't be and see if its worth it. I know people tell me to look at the life AFTER the academy and some say that its actually not that bad, but if I'm going to be spending four years of my life somewhere, I'd still like some degree of "normality" :rolleyes: and hopefully have a maybe enjoyable time.
     
  18. 11BRAVO

    11BRAVO Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2009
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    0
    Chock, I admire you candor and honesty regarding your quest. I apologize if I come across a tad abrassive or harsh but you understand this is a serious matter when considering WP as a college choice. A kid I grew up with got into WP. He was about eight years older than me but we knew their family and his brother was my age. Anyway, John was a very bright young man and well-respected. I really looked up to him. I was probably 10 years old when he left for WP. I never knew what happened until recently but back then all I remember is he wound up going to Ga Tech and went through Navy ROTC and became a US Marine. Last year I spoke with John for the first time after about 35 years. He told me he went to WP and after two weeks of Beast he called home and had his father to come pick him up. John had not done much in the realm of research nor was he an athlete. He said CBT kicked his tail pretty bad and he was not prepared to survive that type of environment. He made a bad choice based on (perhaps) what his parents wanted him to do. Life did work out for him, he graduated from GT and became a Marine officer serving many years and now hold a very good job with a Govt contractor and travels the world.
    I know there are many like John each year at CBT. Nobody wants to be in that situation. You just have to be prepared for it.
     
  19. Chockstock

    Chockstock "Forever One Team"

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    731
    Likes Received:
    8
    :confused: NOt at all...thanks for thinking that way of me and thanks for all the input youve given :smile:

    LOL Howd you know...my biggest fear :unhappy: which is dropping out of CBT or over the academic year. I'm worried about the physical demands too but Im actually much more worried about the way they treat plebes. I guess I could take it over CBT but man, if that kept up all year...I think I would snap under all that negative attention.

    Anyways...yeah its not easy figuring this out

    I just dont really have the best clue of what it might look like compared to a regular civilian college
     
  20. 11BRAVO

    11BRAVO Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2009
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    0
    It's a game you must play day by day. At the end of each day you know that is one less and one closer to the end. I went through OSUT at Fort Benning when I was 23-years old. The first two weeks were really bad. It seemed we could do nothing right. Of course, at WP CBT you will be expected to excel at a much more rapid pace. Enlisted basic training is a broad mixture of people with varying degrees of common sense, intelligence, etc. West Point will tend to have a more concentrated group of very smart people. Therefore, the tolerance for mistakes, forgetfullness, etc. will much less.
    I went through Drill Sergeant School at age 36. It was like going through basic training all over again but add in more learning and less patient instructors. Again, we played the game.
    You have to have a certain sense of humor, a strong desire to succeed, thick skin, and have the ability to live for each minute with a tremendous amount of passion. You have to rise each day with a clean attitude and go to bed each night with a sense of accomplishment. You have to learn to love being wet, dirty, smelly, hungry, and tired. You will question your decision the first few weeks. You will wake up, scratch your bald head and wonder, "WTF did I do?" If you haven't stopped asking that question after two weeks then it may be a very long year.
     

Share This Page