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Does LASIK Change Eye Color?

July 11, 2022

Once you have had LASIK, people can look you in the eyes without the reflection of glasses getting in the way. When they look into the “window to your soul”, what color will they see? You may be perfectly happy with your eye color, or you may wonder, “can LASIK change eye color”? The short answer to this question is a firm NO. However, other things could change eye color, and we’ll go over them below.

Illness or Medication

One’s eye color is determined by the iris, which is made up of varying amounts of melanin pigment. Individuals with less melanin will have lighter eyes, while those with more melanin will have darker eyes. Eye color may show subtle changes over time, and this is to be expected. However, illness or medication can cause more dramatic changes than those that occur naturally.

For example, chronic inflammation of the iris, such as iritis, could cause depigmentation of the tissue over time. Similarly, in a condition called pigment dispersion syndrome, pigment is shed from the iris, altering its color. Some people also have moles on their iris, called nevi, causing one part of the iris to be a different color than the rest.

Certain medications can induce changes in iris color as well.  

Colored Contact Lenses 

The safest way to change your eye color is to use colored contact lenses. There is a wide variety of options in this realm. Lightly tinted lenses can enhance existing eye color and are most useful for blue or green eyes. Opaque lenses can change eye color completely, from brown to blue or vice versa. 

Colored lenses need to be prescribed by an optometrist or ophthalmologist to ensure that they fit properly. You will also need to learn to put them in and take them out if you’ve never worn them before. Contact lenses, whether colored or clear, need to be properly cared for to minimize the risk of infection that they may pose. That means taking lenses out nightly, cleaning them properly, and disposing of them according to their prescribed schedule. 

Age 

The color of the eye does tend to darken slightly with age. The most common instance of this is in babies. Babies are often born with gray or light blue eyes and, as they grow, the amount of melanin in their iris increases, causing a darkening of the eye color. That’s why you might see a baby with gray eyes one day, and a month later they may be brown.

Emotions

When your pupil size changes, eye color may appear different to the observer. When this occurs, the iris is not changing color, in reality, the size of the pupil is affecting how much of the iris is visible. Emotions often affect pupil size, like when one is excited or fearful, making it appear as though their eye color has changed.

Conclusion

While LASIK can’t offer a new eye color, it can finally give you the clear vision you’ve been waiting for. If you’d like to find out more, contact the Kraff Eye Institute today to schedule a complimentary consultation.

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Dr. Colman R. Kraff

Committed to advancing new technologies in the field of ophthalmology, Dr. Colman Kraff helped to pioneer laser vision correction. In February of 1991, as part of a five-site, U.S., FDA clinical trial team, Dr. Kraff successfully performed the first excimer laser procedures in the Chicagoland area using the VISX Excimer Laser.

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