To be able to see this well is amazing

Biking is just not the same for Kristin Drews since she had laser vision correction surgery at Phillips Eye Institute - a campus of Abbott Northwestern Hospital.

And that's a good thing. Now she can see the bike trail signs from a distance and wear regular sunglasses on the trail. No more squinting and wondering if she made the right turn.

The 31-year-old New Hope resident had worn glasses and contacts since her first year of college. But she was never comfortable with either option. Contacts irritated her eyes. "I felt like I was constantly blinking and putting in eye drops," she said. Since her eyesight wasn't "horrible," she only wore glasses when driving and during meetings at work.

After her optometrist mentioned that she would be a good candidate for vision correction surgery, she thought about it for a few years before deciding to look into it. That led her to Keith Carlson, MD, an ophthalmologist with Allina Health clinics in Eagan and Farmington and Claris Eye Care and Surgery.

Drews was impressed with both Carlson, who has been included in the local Top Doc listings from Minneapolis-St. Paul Magazine, and with Phillips Eye Institute, which is the region's only specialty eye hospital. "Knowing it has a great reputation made a difference to me," said Drews.

Planning for her eye surgery began with an appointment with Carlson to discuss her options and make sure laser vision correction was right for her. After she decided to go ahead with surgery, she had a second appointment for additional tests and imaging. The results gave Carlson the precise measurements and data needed for laser treatment on each eye. Then surgery was scheduled for each eye, about one week apart, at Phillips Eye Institute.

On the day of her first eye surgery, Drews was a little nervous. "I think with any surgery, you're nervous." She requested a mild sedative, which helped her relax. She was also reassured by the staff's obvious focus on her safety and comfort. Carlson and the staff talked to her throughout the procedure, explaining each step and what she would notice or feel. It was over in less than 10 minutes.

Her recovery was also quick. She had a follow-up appointment with Carlson on the day after each surgery to ensure that everything was healing as it should. Each day, she noticed improvement in her vision. Within a few weeks, she felt completely recovered.

"I would definitely recommend this to a friend - especially because it's basically a one-time thing," said Drews. "There's no more of the nuisance and inconvenience of buying glasses and refilling the contact lens prescription. To be able to see this well is amazing."

Source: Phillips Eye Institute
Reviewed By: Keith Carlson, MD, ophthalmologist
First Published: 09/19/2013
Last Reviewed: 09/19/2013

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kristin drews
Kristin now enjoys riding her bike without glasses.