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All things LASIK surgery (aircrew/other -- merged)

Originally posted by Ghost778:
[qb] Join the infantry. You can fly helicoters and CF18s after you join. Its like a QL5 course or something. [/qb]
I know that sarcasm is difficult to detect in print, so I will assume that you are being sarcastic, based on your experience stated in your profile.

For the non-military types who might believe this, don‘t. Just because it‘s on the Internet doesn‘t make it true.

You can in practice become a pilot after joining, but you have to become an officer, and still undergo all the normal flight training that you would if you walked in off civvie street. There are more than a few programs that allow for this, but it won‘t happen until you‘ve been in for at least your first Basic Engagement (3 years), and then it‘s based on competition.

Anyway, hope that puts that tall tale to rest.

Thanks for the help guys. Now to plan B(pray that they change the no laser eye surgery rule). ;) But if they don‘t change the rule, Il‘l go through RMC and join an Engineering Corps. O well dreams are still dreams.
Not entirely correct people...

To enter the CF as a pilot:

yes, you need 20/20 uncorrected, but the CF has leaned towards trained pilots getting laser eye surgery to maintain the "perfect vision".

But for Air crew (navigators, loadmasters, etc) You may get laser eye surgery to have what is called V1 or vision catagory 1 which is no less then 25/20 as you all would call it.

In the Army, the only vision catagory requirements above V3 are for Cbt divers which are a specialty of the Engineers. They have to be no less then V2(actually you can read for anyone that can become a ships diver, including medics). Also for interest of you wanna-bes, SAR Tech is a V2 as well because of thier diving/flying requirements.

Then if you are below spec, you may get the surgery if...

1. Granted permission from CO,
2. Go on 6 - 12 temp medical catagory,
3. Pay for it yourself..

Then you have to be cleared V2 or higher by Opthamoligist (if your paying $1500, your eyes better be V1).
yea no one answered about teh army, i dont care about the airforce, for the army, are you restricted wth having glasses or laser eye surgery to anything, ie, airborne or jtf-2 or infantry.
Ludacris, re-read ArmyMedic‘s post....

Basically for the army, you can have glasses and/or eye surgery.. If your eyes are really bad, however, you can be restricted from certain trades, if not the military in general.
I was very close to getting Laser Eye surgery about a year ago but decided to wait because the doctor told me I need to go throught at LEAST two months of little to no extreme physical activity because any sweat that enters they eyes will likley lead to infection.
I find it suspect that a lot of the doctors performing these procedures seem to employ the use of glasses. Hhhmmmmmmmmmmm....

Interesting.  Too bad the Canadian Forces doesn't similarly realise the BENEFITS of providing a similar service to Canadian troops (but, of course, I suspect some bean-counter would say it costs too much ... or that there's "no entitlement", since it's not covered by provincial health care programs ... ignoring the simple fact that provincial health care programs are not designed to produce combat-ready soldiers ...)

US soldiers flock to laser eye clinic
By Kimberly Hefling, Associated Press  |  September 26, 2004

FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. -- Command Sergeant Major Kurt Pinero looked up from the operating table after laser eye surgery, and made out the pictures on the television screen across the room.

"It was amazing," said the 45-year-old Iraq war veteran. "It was the first time I could see that far since I was a child."

After months in the Iraqi desert fumbling with dusty contacts, smudged eyeglasses, and prescription goggles, soldiers by the thousands are flocking to get refractive eye surgery.

And the Army is picking up the tab.

"Our workload and number of patients has gone through the roof," said Major Glenn Sanford of the two-year-old Warfighter Refractive Eye Surgery Clinic at Fort Campbell's Blanchfield Army Hospital.

About 26,000 soldiers have undergone the surgery at Army clinics nationwide since it was first made available four years ago at Fort Bragg, N.C.

More than 9,000 of the operations have been done at Fort Bragg, and 8,000 other soldiers at the post are on a waiting list to have the procedure between now and January, when many are scheduled to be deployed.

The military sees this surgery as a way to help soldiers see better on the battlefield, where split-second decisions can save lives. Soldiers without glasses can also use instruments such as night-vision goggles with less trouble.

In combat, soldiers who lose their glasses are not only a danger to themselves, but also to others

Priority for the surgery is typically given to the soldiers most likely to be in combat. It is offered at eight Army medical centers, and at least 10 Navy and Air Force medical facilities.

The surgery costs the Army about $1,000 per soldier, compared with an average $1,785 per eye in the civilian sector.

In 1993, the military's first refractive surgery program started at Naval Medical Center San Diego. The surgery was done on Navy SEALS; many had problems with losing contacts or glasses while parachuting or in the water.

Of 450,000 active Army soldiers, an estimated one-third are potentially eligible for surgery, said Colonel Kraig Bowers, refractive surgery consultant for the Army surgeon general.

But with its current funding, the Army can treat only about 10,000 to 12,000 soldiers a year.

Lieutenant Colonel Mark Torres, an optometrist who has analyzed surveys of soldiers who have been deployed with and without the surgery, said they say overwhelmingly that it was a benefit.

"We look at this surgery as a performance-enhancing procedure that gives us a soldier that's better able to function," said Torres, chief of refractive surgery at the Madigan Army Medical Center at Fort Lewis, Wash.

The two procedures commonly done by the military are photorefractive keratectomy, or PRK, and laser keratomileusis, or LASIK.

In PRK surgery, a laser is used to reshape the surface of the cornea. LASIK involves cutting a flap in the cornea and using a laser to reshape exposed tissue before the flap is put back.
bossi, I was wondering, could you give me the web adress of this article?
I would like to send it to my father, he is in the business.
sure, but he is not in the laser surgery, he sells the prescription swimming goggles, and I thought he might want to take a look at the article, especially the part about the soldier wearing goggles in Iraq.
I find it hard to believe that the CF hasn't gotten on the ball and starting providing funds for soldiers who want the surgery. I have found that alot of emergency services departments out there get a deal going for their employees with clinics. In 2000 you could go through the Halifax Fire Dept and get 50% off of your surgery or anyone's in your family. ALOT of guys used this to their advantage. The CF probably can't afford to cover it all but, IMHO, they should be eating some of the cost. The surgery gets better by the day, less risks, better results, etc. they should take the plunge sometime.
It's cheaper for the CF to provide an uncommon medical service for free (say a surgery that only one or 2 members need.. not hinting at anything specific  ::) ) than to provide a surgery that many soldiers could use to vastly improve the effectiveness of how they carry out their job.
I am sure that there could be some sort of deal worked where the surgery could be made cheaper. Spend a bit of the budget, have the CF's Med Staff go look at surgeons in certain cities, say, Vancouver, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottawa, Toronto, Fredericton and Halifax. Have them find the ones that they like the most and then approach these places and ask them if they'd like some advertising done on their behalf on Military bases. Most would probably jump at that and also be willing to drop the price a bit for members. As I said before, it has worked great in some fire services across the country.

Just thoughts
~RoKo~ said:
It's cheaper for the CF to provide an uncommon medical service for free (say a surgery that only one or 2 members need.. not hinting at anything specific ::) ) than to provide a surgery that many soldiers could use to vastly improve the effectiveness of how they carry out their job.

Now you should know better than that.  If it were to make sense and be cost effective over the long run our government and DND heirarchy will not go for it.  Now if it is for some whinning visible minority or just outright illogical, then they will go for it. ::)

I would subscribe to it.  I've worn glasses a long time and hate them, although they have saved my eyes in the case of a "cook off".

I think that you will find that the official position is that laser surgery can have an effect on your night vision, which is why the CF does not offer the surgery. 
It may affect your night vision, yes, but I believe that the CF allows you to have the surgery. When I did the processing they told me that if I were to have the surgery as a potential recruit that I would have to wait for one year and then have my eyes re checked before I could get an offer of employment. I know that I did discuss the possibility of surgery while I was a member and for the life of me can't remember the answer I was given. Seems to me that they told me that I could not do major exercises or deployments for that one year.....Someone here must have some experience with this.........?
sure it may effect your night vision...may..and even still we have the wonders of NVG's :eek:

i wear glasses, have since i was 5. i am also joning the army next year hopfully. I intend to get the surgury whenever i can afford it (average of $3000 i assume, prolly not covered with the coverage we get up here, to costly for a part time worker.) and if i have to wait an additional year, that will suck but ill take it anyday.

if the CF would go for this (and its totally pratical) people like myself can get the surgury sooner and at lower cost. everyone wins...cept the military budget :p
Piccillo, there are places that offer financing for laser surgery, look at some on the internet, it may help. I researched one out of Vancouver that can get your surgery done for payments of as low as 30 bucks a month. Food for thought