Last Saturday, my blogger friend, Mitch, of Mitcheryosa.com, asked me to go with her to QC Eye Center because she will be having her general eye check up in order for her eyes to be fully assessed before she undergo the Lasik (laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis) Surgery, which will be performed by Dr. Archimedes Lee Agahan. Since, I am also suffering from high grade on both my eyes and am interested and curious about the Lasik Surgery, I eagerly tagged along.
When we were at the center, we were courteously entertained by the receptionist. After a while, Mitch and I (yes, I also accompanied her during the check up and the other tests because I was given permission to) were brought to the second floor for the preliminary eye check up. After sometime, we were brought back to the ground floor for further tests. While I was waiting for Mitch, I got the chance to mingle with other patients, who were waiting for their turns to be attended by Dr. Archie. Actually, I observed that there were many patients waiting in line and I was also told that that is the sort of daily scenario in the QC Eye Center.
Anyway, I happened to have chitchat with one of the patients, he is around 40-50 years old. According to him, he has undergone Lasik surgery with Dr. Agahan 4 weeks ago and he was happy about the result. Now, he’s back for an eye enhancement. He also pointed out that Dr. Agahan is a good doctor and that he possesses soothing hands and that during the entire surgery, he (the patient) felt no pain. There was also another patient that I also talked to, he mentioned that after his surgery, his vision has returned to normal and he’s back for follow up check up. So far, most of the patients I have talked to about the surgical procedure (and Dr. Archie Agahan) have told me that they were all happy with the result of the Lasik Surgery as Dr. Agahan is a very good doctor, which was a positive feedback, the way I see it.
Aside from talking to some of the many patients that are waiting in line for their turns, I also managed to observe the area. Actually, I was not surprise to find out how the clinic was well-maintained; it smelled, looked and felt clean. I was also allowed to enter the waiting room which is still part of the surgical room but only a glass wall was in between so I can still see the entire Lasik procedure.
Take note, before I was allowed to enter the adjacent room, I was instructed to change my slippers into theirs for sterile purposes, while Mitch and Dr. Agahan changed into the usual scrub suits.
I can even hear Dr. Agahan’s voice during the entire process as he instructed and asked Mitch (from time to time) if she’s okay. During the procedure, Mitch was informed (as I can hear their conversations) that there will be times that she will lose her vision and that was normal. Even so, I can see that Mitch was a little bit shocked when she first experienced the said temporary blindness. Nevertheless, the whole process went smoothly as Dr. Agahan keeps on asking Mitch if she’s feeling alright.
The entire Lasik surgery took around 30minutes plus 30 minutes consumed for the preliminary check-ups and tests, so we were at the QC Eye Center for more or less an hour. Actually, the plan that day was only for eye check up and other preliminary tests prior to the surgery and the Lasik procedure will be scheduled after. But since the results of the tests turned out fine, Mitch and Dr. Agahan decided to perform the surgery on that same day because Mitch resides in Subic and it would be difficult and a hassle for her to return to QC EYE Center on the next schedule.
After the Lasik surgery, Dr. Agahan’s assistant approached her and informed her of her schedule for the follow up check up, she also gave Mitch the eye drops required she will be need for faster recovery and to avoid infections and complications, as well. Mitch was also given a piece of paper where instructions were written in Filipino. At first, she found it difficult to read what’s written on the paper, but after sometime, she has managed to read it.
After the surgery, Dr. Agahan talked to Mitch, asked her on how does she feel after the procedure and he also gave some reminders.
Mitch was not wearing her usual eyeglasses anymore after the surgery instead she was using the goggles now provided by the QC Eye Center. The goggles will serve to protect Mitch eyes from dust and other foreign particles that may enter her eyes, as well as, protect them from harmful rays of the sun. Since I was with Mitch until 5 in the afternoon, I also happened to observe her after the surgery. She was able to walk straight without the need for assistance. She also mentioned that at first, there was a sort of fog in her vision, but after a while, her vision became clearer.
Two days after the surgery I asked her several questions that I was eager to know: Here’s our conversation:
Me: What do you feel 2 days after the surgery?
Mitch: I can see clearly from far which used to be my struggle. However, my eyes seem to still adjust with a distance of about 15″ away from my laptop.
Me: Can you already “see” the difference?
Mitch: Yes, a huge difference. Believe me, while I was heading back to Subic after the surgery, I felt like a child again who was just learning ABCs and very eager to read the billboards displayed on the road. I missed doing that without my eyeglasses on.
Me: Are there times that “regrets” cross your minds? Why or why not?
Mitch: I don’t really entertain regrets in whatever decisions I make, may it be a minor or major one. Besides, it’s too early to conclude whether my vision will go back to normal or not.
Me: What improvement do you expect after let’s say after 3 -6 months?
Mitch: I expect not to feel any complications and of course the main purpose of having a LASIK surgery, having the best normal vision. If not 20/20, at least 40/40 hahaha!
I’m glad that Mitch is gradually recovering now and the outcome of the surgery turned out to be successful based on her response. If you like, you can read about Mitch’s entire experience about the whole Lasik surgery experience on her blog at Mitchteryosa.com: My Lasik Surgery Experience.
On the other hand, I would like also to mention that I am scared of doctors, but with Dr. Archie Agahan, I felt comfortable. For me, he’s one of the few doctors that seemed so approachable and friendly that I can ask any questions that pops in my mind related to the procedure he’s performing. To start with, I asked few important questions to Dr. Archie and he gladly answered them; below are some of the information I gathered:
Name: Archimedes Lee D. Agahan
Me: What is your background and training experience? Specialization?
Answer (A): Doctor of Medicine-UP College of Medicine 1995-2000
Residency Training in Ophthalmology – UP-PGH 2001-2003
Fellowship Training in Cornea, External Eye Diseases, Uveitis – UP-PGH 2004
Master in Ocular Surface, Uveitis, and Refractive Surgery – University of Valladolid, Spain – 2005- 2006
Me: How many procedures have you done? How many years have you performed refractive surgery?
A: Refractive Surgery since 2006
Surgeries – more than 1000
Me: Do you perform procedures at your own center, or do you need to travel elsewhere?
A: QC Eye Center and Manila Vision Correction Center are both eye centers that carry and own the Customvis Pulzar z1 solid state laser where I do all LASIK procedures. To which I am a stockholder / LASIK specialist.
Me: What percentage of your patients receives 20/20 vision or better?
A: Well, this is very objective. We usually discuss the goals of Lasik surgery with patients and if they are amenable to our goals, then we do Lasik on them. Otherwise, if the expectations are high, we usually don’t do the Lasik. Our track record shows that in more than 1 month after Lasik surgery, over 95% of our patients have a vision of 20/40 or better.
Me: . How much does the Lasik procedure cost?
A: Around 60-80k in the market for both eyes
Me: What is included in the cost the Lasik surgery?
A: Facility Fees, Professional Fees, and Eye medications.
Me: What will happen during screening?
A: During screening, a series of exams are performed to check if the patient is a good or poor candidate.
Me: During surgery?
A. During surgery, a flap is performed using a microkeratome. The flap is lifted and LASIK is performed using the machine. The flap is then returned and allowed to dry and heal on its own.
Me: What can the patient expect after surgery?
A: Slightly blurred vision, tearing, foreign body sensation, sandy feeling in the eyes. Down time is 8-12 hours.
Me: Please identify the devices used on the screening and during the surgery and their use/purpose. What kind of laser do you use?
1. Wavefront / aberrometer machine – to check the total error of refraction of the eye.
2. Corneal topography – to produce a map of the surface of the eye to see steepening, flattening, and astigmatism of the cornea.
3. Pachymetry – to check the thickness of cornea.
4. Tonometer – to check the eye pressure.
5. Schirmer strips – to check the dryness / tear level of eye.
1. Microkeratome – to produce the flap prior to Lasik.
2. Customvis Pulzar z1 – to produce the laser beam used to ablate the corneal tissue.
Me: What percentage of your pervious patients has had enhancement surgery? Do you have enhancement policy?
A: Around 5-10% undergo Lasik enhancement. No charge on facility and professional fees – just pay for the operation supplies and eye meds to be used.
Me: Do you charge extra if an enhancement is required? If you do charge extra for enhancements, what kind of a price break can be expected?
A: Php 2,500 only
Me: How many follow up checkups are expected after the surgery?
A: Usually 1 week, 1 month, 6 months, and every year check up after surgery.
Me: What type of LASIK technology do you offer?
A: We offer STANDARD and CUSTOMIZED LASIK treatment using the solid-state laser Customvis Pulzar z1 machine.
Because of what I have learned based on the gathered information, together with Mitch’s experience and my observations during the surgery, I am now fully convinced to undergo Lasik surgery. Actually, I have been planning to undergo Lasik surgery together with Mitch but due to prior commitments, I was not able to do so.
After the conversation with Dr. Archie Agahan, I mentioned to him if I can avail discounts if I will undergo the surgery on my next visit, then he mentioned that Awesome.ph would be featuring a deal on QC Eye Center and Manilavision Standard Lasik valued at P65,000 for 50% off – P32,500 because of this I was really excited that I have already subscribed to awesome.ph even though Dr. Agahan told us that the promo will probably be on December of this year.
And for those who would like to avail of this big discount, you can opt to mention our names, Mitch and Iris, as you may avail special discount or you may contact me so that I can refer you to Dr. Agahan.
For more information regarding Lasik Surgery, you may call (+632) 5023166 or visit their office at:
QC Eye Center
Anita Building Quezon Avenue
Corner Timog Avenue
Schedule: Saturday A.M.
Manila Vision Correction Center (MVCC)
3rd Floor, Robinson’s Place
Manila, Pedro Gil Wing
Schedule: Saturday P.M.