How Much Does LASIK Eye Surgery Cost in San Diego?

Do you want the best LASIK eye surgeon without going broke? When it comes to the best in laser eye surgery, you can have your cake and eat it too. The cost of LASIK in San Diego is affordable for most people, because we offer competitive pricing and flexible payment options to meet your budget and help make it easier to get improved vision. At La Jolla LASIK Institute, we know that cost is a major factor in choosing a surgeon or whether or not to get LASIK. Here, we offer some things to think about as you make this life-changing decision.

LASIK in San Diego costs are an investment in your health and wellbeing

As you research LASIK eye surgery costs in San Diego, keep in mind that you are paying for not only the surgery, but for long-lasting health and vision that will benefit you the rest of your life. Your eyes are delicate and the LASIK surgery, although fast, isn’t simple. This is a highly detailed surgery that calls for great skill and experience, and it should be performed by a board certified ophthalmologist with a high success rate. You deserve the best outcome, so you shouldn’t gamble your sight and health for the cheapest price. It often holds true in healthcare that you get what you pay for, so if you want the best for improving your eyes, you want the best LASIK surgeon like Dr. Nahl of La Jolla LASIK who is a Harvard trained, board certified ophthalmologist.

Your San Diego LASIK cost will vary depending on treatment

Most of the time, the cost of LASIK eye surgery in San Diego varies. Costs fluctuate due to prescriptions, your health condition, and the type of laser needed for your specific eye treatment. At your consultation, Dr. Nahl will thoroughly examine your eyes and overall health and devise a care plan appropriate for you. You’ll be able to get a better idea of costs at this time. Usually, San Diego LASIK cost includes your surgeon’s fees, facility and technology fees, and things you’ll need for care before and after your procedure. These items are detailed within your LASIK cost estimate.

Payment Options at La Jolla LASIK

We aim to make our LASIK procedures accessible to everyone, so we offer affordability with a range of flexible payment options. Our center accepts financing with CareCredit (several plans are accepted to meet your needs) and FLEX dollars and HSA or MSA to help pay for high-deductible insurance costs.

You can apply for financing online now or after your consultation. We offer so many payment options to allow you to be able to get the corrective eye surgery you need at a price point you can afford. Why not apply now and schedule your complimentary consultation at La Jolla LASIK? You’ll be glad you did.

How soon can I exercise after LASIK Eye Surgery?

Contrary to popular belief, the recovery time for LASIK surgery is actually very short. Most patients find themselves up and active shortly after their surgery. If you’re considering the procedure but are concerned about exercising after LASIK since you play a sport or follow a strict exercise routine, don’t worry. The team at La Jolla LASIK has put together a list of recovery times for each sport below:

slamdunk_outlineBasketball: For you basketball players out there, the average recovery time is about a week. So sit back, relax, and enjoy a week off the court. Just enough time for you to refuel before getting back in the game.

Running: Runners have it great, your recovery time is only about three days. In three short days you’ll be back at it, with better sight nonetheless.

Weight lifting: Weight lifting also has a very short recovery, only about two to three days. Make sure  to make the most out of your recovery by relaxing and eating a healthy diet, and you’ll be back in the gym in no time.

hockeyHockey: You can expect to be back on the ice in about six to seven days. In a rough contact sport like hockey, it’s crucial that you are fully recovered before jumping into the rink again.

Golf: Golf is a pretty short recovery as well. In two or three days you’ll be back on the course with better sight to help with your drive shots.

Water sports: Any water sports like surfing, kayaking, and boating require about a one week recovery time.

Football-PlayerFootball: You’ll be back blocking passes and throwing touchdowns anywhere between six and seven days. Take this time to memorize plays, consider it an opportunity for you to get a leg-up on your rivals.

Baseball: You’ll be sitting in the dugout for about seven days. But after that, you’re vision will help you hit more home runs and throw more precisely.

Horseback riding: Horseback riders have about a three day recovery. This means you can get LASIK in-between horse shows, and still have plenty of time for practice.

saoccerSoccer: Soccer requires a seven day recovery time following LASIK. Although this may seem like a long time off the field, just think of how much your game will improve once you’re fully recovered!

Motorcycling: Wait about a week before getting back on the bike.

Biking: Bikers should expect to take about two to three days off from riding.

snowboarderSnow sports: All you snowboarders, skiers, and snowmobilers should plan to take one week off before getting back on the slopes.

As you can see the LASIK recovery time is fairly short. In about one week you can engage in all full-contact sports, and within two to three days all non-contact. If for some reason your sport wasn’t posted, or you have questions regarding LASIK, comment below
and we will be happy to answer. If you’re
curious about LASIK and interested in the
surgery, schedule a free consultation today.

Cigarette Smoking Can Cause Glaucoma-Like Eye Damage

Smoking cigarettes is well known to be a general health detriment, which can lead to a host of specific problems. Signs of premature aging, such as dry skin and early, widespread wrinkling, are one risk. More serious conditions, like lung cancer and chronic pulmonary disease (emphysema), also become significantly more likely.

While most are aware of some of the other health effects of smoking, far fewer realize the effect that smoking can have on their eyes. At La Jolla Lasik, we are acutely aware of this risk factor, and we see it as yet one further reason to quit smoking as soon as possible.

Eye Conditions With Increased Risk for Smokers

As compared with nonsmokers, smokers run a significantly higher risk of developing cataracts. A cataract is a cloudy area on an eye’s lens, which will blur vision and ultimately lead to the need for surgery. Cataracts naturally grow progressively worse once they first develop, and they must be physically removed to eliminate the cloudiness. Smoking can double your risk of getting a cataract.

Smokers are three times more likely to develop age-related macular degeneration (AMD). AMD causes blind spots in the central retina, which lead to loss of central vision capabilities. AMD is the number one cause of vision loss inU.S. patients aged 65 and up, which indicates the particularly high risk of AMD for seniors who continue to smoke.

There are many other eye conditions that smokers are at a higher risk of developing, such as dry eyes and diabetic retinopathy. Suffice it to say that smoking is not healthy for your eyes.

Smoking-Related Glaucoma Symptoms

One recent study has indicated that a connection exists between smoking and eye damage that closely resembles early-stage glaucoma symptoms. Glaucomainvolves heightened intraocular pressure levels. This means that the optic nerve, which connects the eye to the brain, is put under excessive pressure. Since images are relayed from eye to brain along via nerve impulses along the optic nerve, Glaucoma can ultimately cut off this connection and lead to blindness.

The study’s research team reports that the retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) is significantly affected by smoking. The RNFL collects visual data from the eye’s photoreceptors and ganglion cells and directs it to the optic nerve. The study found that smokers had an RNFL that was significantly thinner than those of non-smokers, on average, and a thinned-down RNFL is a symptom associated with glaucoma as well as certain other eye conditions.

Have Your Eye Health Evaluated

Quitting smoking today is one of the best things you can do to help improve the health of your eyes. Even those who have smoked for many years will see positive results and may avoid future problems by giving up the smoking habit.

A second important step to take to guard the health of your eyes is simply to have your eyesight evaluated. At La Jolla Lasik, we have experienced ophthalmologists on-staff who have the skills necessary to accurately assess the health of your eyes. If any problems are found, we can recommend to you thebest treatment options for each type of eye condition, including glaucoma and AMD.

La Jolla Lasik offers you this assessment on a complimentary basis, and we will be happy to address all of your eye-related questions and concerns as well.

Tanning Bed Users: Watch Out for Your Eyes While Tanning

Recently the British College of Optometrists have come out with an updated warning: people are putting their eyes at serious risk by skipping out on wearing protective goggles or shades when they hop into their local tanning bed.

Tanning bed users, be warned!  Any means of seeking the perfect tan, including tanning beds, can cause malignant melanoma, an aggressive and potentially fatal form of cancer that metastasizes to the brain.  Melanoma is a lethal possible outcome of sun- and fake sun-worshipping, but your eyes are at risk, as well.  Closing your eyes while lying down is not enough protection – your eyelids are extremely thin and therefore some of the sun’s rays pass right through them.  If you’ve read my previous article on Healthy Eyesight, I talked about how UVA and UVB rays from the sun are extremely damaging to eyes and therefore make wearing sunglasses necessary.  Tanning beds pose even more of a risk to eyes, since the ultraviolet light used in these beds produce concentrated UVA and UVB rays directly upon your face.  So, leaving out the protective goggles before climbing in is a major no-no.  You should be treating your eyes in a tanning bed the same way you would when heading out to the beach – protect them with sunglasses!  Standard UVA- and UVB-protected shades are readily available at your local drugstore.

Repeatedly exposing your eyes to the UVA and UVB rays in a tanning bed without protective goggles can lead to growths on the eye, cataracts, ocular melanoma and potentially cause long-term damage to your eyesight.  Even if you’re a contact lens-wearer and have UV protection built into your lenses, they do not cover the entire eye and therefore you are still exposed to dangerous UV rays.  Take my advice and goggle up!  Risking your skin is already scary enough; you don’t want to harm your eyes.


How Soon Can I Exercise After LASIK in San Diego?

When it is safe to exercise after having LASIK?

Generally, 3 days after the procedure but consider your sport and how you play the game:

  1. Don’t squint or scrunch your eyes for 24 hours
  2. Return to most exercise in 1-3 days
  3. Back to swimming pools, hot tubs, oceans, rivers, and lakes after 14 days
  4. Don’t rub your eyes for 30 days
  5. Choose PRK over LASIK if the sport involves  getting hit in the face

If your sport is boxing, martial arts, wrestling, or another sport with a big chance of getting hit in the eye, let me know, and we’ll consider PRK for your San Diego refractive procedure.

Hold off for two weeks from spending time in Jacuzzis, playing water polo, or swimming just about anywhere.

Remember if you sweat profusely not to rub your eyes for a month after your procedure.  Just blot your face, not your eyes.  I was a big eye-rubber (and have the wrinkles to prove it!) but I did it.  If I can refrain from rubbing my eyes for a month, so can you!

When you’re working out at the gym after LASIK, consider all the equipment to be covered in toxic waste, so don’t touch your face until you’ve washed your hands.

Sure, you can walk or do yoga for exercise after LASIK, but after day 3, as long as you don’t get hit in the eye or rub your eyes, you don’t need to limit yourself to these!

Yoga after LASIK

Confused?  Come on in with your specific question and I’ll help you find clarity, and peace of mind, and your best LASIK San Diego or PRK San Diego procedure.

Top 5 Smartphone Apps for Your Eyes

Here at La Jolla LASIK Institute in San Diego we like to stay on top of the most cutting-edge technology in the ophthalmological world. One breakthrough trend we’ve noticed lately: vision-related apps for smartphones and eyesight.  From vision tests to optical illusions, these applications are increasingly growing in popularity in the smartphone community.  While we can’t promise that any of these are medically accurate, we can promise that they’re entertaining!  Here is a top five list of various vision apps that we’ve found to be the most diverse and interesting:

  1. NETRA App (Not yet priced: estimated $1.99) – Although this app is still a prototype, it looks extremely promising.  Developed at MIT for the Android, NETRA has gained a lot of publicity recently.  After downloading the app, the user will attach an inexpensive ($2) lens to the screen of their smartphone and hold it up to their eye.  The user will align patterns presented in the lens by pushing buttons on the phone, which is repeated four times (one for each eye’s axis).  Once this is complete, the app delivers the user’s eyewear prescription.  Keep an eye out for this one, folks – we can’t wait for this to arrive on the market.  At first we were skeptical that a product used at near could accurately test for a person’s distance prescription, but the data on this one looks promising.  If it works, it could be a great solution for rapidly screening large groups of indigent people around the world.  We look forward to testing it out on medical missions and at health fairs when it’s available.
  2. Amazing Illusions: Fun Optical Puzzles ($0.99) – This app holds an excellent collection of optical illusions and puzzles that are both entertaining and stimulating.  The illusions are mostly presented in a Q&A format so unless you pick the “cheat” option (don’t get tempted!) you can test your mental abilities and share them with your friends.  Apparently there is a warning not to use this on your pets!!??  So, please don’t mesmerize little Fifi.
  3. Eye Exercises – Daily Program ($0.99) – We list this one because you’re bound to find it and ask about it.  There is only ONE diagnosis, convergence insufficiency, that has ever proven to benefit from “eye exercises.”  AND standard convergence insufficiency treatment requires one piece of equipment — an ordinary pencil!  We bet you can get a pencil cheaper than $0.99, but if you can’t, here’s an app for you.   This app has some other stuff on it too, so check it out if you’re curious.
  4. PseudoChromatic ColorTest (Free) – This app is designed specifically to assess color vision deficiency.  It delivers the user a series of images where a colored number is presented in the middle of another color – this is known as the Ishihara Color Test.  This app also great fun because it provides information on the different types of color perception, statistics on people who experience color deficiency, and the ways in which color deficiency is passed on genetically.
  5. EyeXam (Free) – Since NETRA hasn’t quite come out yet, this is the next best thing.  EyeXam is a vision test app that helps users evaluate their vision with an eye chart using the highest performance method.  There are tests for color perception, eye dominance, and astigmatism.  Its revenue model seems to be to be a paid directory for local eye doctors, so check it out and tell us if it’s good enough for us to be a listed eye clinic.

These apps are a very entertaining way to engage with your eyesight – please let us know if you have tried out any of them and what you think.   Intuitively obvious disclaimer:  no app is a substitute for your Eye MD examining your eyes.  But the next time you’re here at La Jolla LASIK Institute seeing Dr. Nahl in preparation for your super-vision San Diego LASIK eye surgery, you can compare vision apps!  Enjoy.


La Jolla LASIK National Scholarship

La Jolla LASIK is a proud contributor to the ABWA Scholarship Fund and is now holding a national essay contest. The contest winner will receive a $2,000 scholarship in the name of the ABWA Scholarship Fund.

A Cause Close To Us

Since its inception in 1953, the Stephen Bufton Memorial Educational Fund (SBMEF) has been a driving force in helping women get access to higher education. Today the educational fund of the American Business Women’s Association (ABWA) is considered a top-tier national grant and scholarship program moving women forward with this business women scholarship. In its lifetime, the ABWA’s Board of Trustees has awarded more than $17 million in scholarships to over 16,000 women thanks to the generous contributions of ABWA members. Fast-forward 60 years, and the ABWA’s spirit of giving continues to grow in the twenty-first century.

The SBMEF’s goal is to assist women pursuing an advanced education compete and succeed in today’s competitive business atmosphere. By doing so, women are becoming larger role models, mentors, and leaders for the future. Sponsoring, selecting and awarding scholarships across the United States has been a core component of the ABWA for over 60 years.

ABWA’s Mission

The Mission of the American Business Women’s Association (ABWA) is to provide educational opportunities for women to succeed in their post-secondary educational goals as well as their continued career advancement. As a result, the ABWA is helping to advance female role models, mentors and leaders in their communities across the nation.


Who Is Eligible:

  • Must be a Woman
  • Must be in College

Email Entry Now

  • Must have a Minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Must be a US Citizen

You Must Include:

  • Your full name
  • Email address
  • Postal address
  • University
  • Major
  • Year to graduate
  • Phone number
  • Brief personal bio
  • Your essay

How To Enter

To enter the La Jolla LASIK 2014 scholarship opportunity sponsored by the ABWA, you must write a 500-700 word essay on “Your vision for improving the community you live in.” Through your eyes, we want you to address the problems you see on a daily basis and create a process for how some of these problems can be addressed and ultimately solved. Create a clear vision for a stronger healthier community of the future!

The essay and accompanying information must be submitted to before 11:59 pm Pacific Standard Time (PST) on Sunday August 17, 2014. Once submitted, you will receive a confirmation email.


The deadline to submit your essay is 11:59pm (PST) on Sunday August 17, 2014. Essays submitted before the deadline will be read and evaluated to determine the winner of this year’s scholarship. The winner will be announced September 4, 2014 and awarded the sum of $2,000 for the 2014 Fall semester. The La Jolla LASIK 2014 scholarship winner will be notified via email and a phone call (using the contact information provided with your email entry).

The scholarship must be used for tuition or books. Scholarships are not renewable (meaning it will be rewarded only for Fall 2014 and not subsequent terms). Final selection will be made by the Board of Trustees of the ABWA’s educational scholarship fund. For the scholarship to be awarded, we must have a minimum of three qualified applicants that have completed the sign up process and submitted the essay properly and before the deadline. Checks that are not cashed will be returned to the general SBMEF fund. *This is a rare occurrence but has happened.


If you have any further questions, please email us at

*The $2,000 scholarship award will go toward tuition and book costs only. The check will be made out to the school you attend and credited to your academic costs. *Essays must be received no later than 11:59pm (PST) on August 17, 2014). *Submit essay to

Use Your Pre-Tax Dollars to Pay for LASIK

Do you know that you can use your FSA, HSA or MSA to pay for LASIK in San Diego?

The IRS has recognized LASIK as a valid medical expense  under code 213.  There are two major ways to take advantage of this:  1) Take the tax deduction, subject to IRS rules. 2) Use a FSA, MSA or HSA to pay for your LASIK tax-free!

How These Accounts Work

  • Flexible Spending Account (FSA): Benefit plans are established by the employer; medical expenses are reimbursed with pre-tax dollars.  Leftover funds do not roll over.   LASIK is a great way to use the remaining FSA dollars in your account before the end of the year!
  • Health Savings Account (HSA): Tax-exempt trust that pays for the medical expenses of the beneficiary who is covered by a qualified health plan.  Leftover funds roll over.  Use HSA for LASIK anytime.
  • Medical Savings Account (MSA): Tax-exempt trust that pays for medical expenses alongside a qualified health plan.  Leftover funds roll over.  Use the funds at any time for your LASIK procedure.

So, how do you go about using these accounts to pay for LASIK?

  • You can pay for the surgery upfront and submit the receipt to your employer for reimbursement; OR
  • Your company provides you with a card that we charge like a credit card.

If you’re thinking about getting LASIK in San Diego but worried about the cost, just remember that there are tons of options out there that will make it more affordable for you.  Do you need 0% financing?  That’s what we’ll get for you.  Your pre-tax dollars can be put toward paying for your surgery and LASIK is considered tax-deductible by the IRS.

You should also come in for a free consultation to discover LASIK eye surgery San Diego cost. Know all your options when you fund your FSA account!

Am I Old Enough or Too Old for LASIK?

Have you asked the questions ” Am I too old for LASIK ?” or ” What age can you get LASIK ?”

If you are at least 18 years old, you can get LASIK.

But what if you’re 40, or 60, or 80?  If you are 40 or 50, you’re still young for LASIK.  I can help you to see up close AND far. Because LASIK occurs on the part of the eye that remains stable over long periods of time, LASIK won’t change the rate at which your eyes age.

If you are in your 70s, though, it might be better to opt for cataract surgery instead of LASIK.  In your 60’s, I’ll check you carefully for early cataract and we’ll decide if early cataract surgery or LASIK is a better choice for you.

Of course, every person’s eyes and circumstances are different, so regardless of your age, I still need to examine your eyes to make sure you’re a LASIK candidate. So call and make an appointment, and I’ll answer all the questions you have.

Does Insurance Cover LASIK?

If you’re looking into getting LASIK in San Diego, one of your top questions is sure to be about how much LASIK surgery will cost with your insurance. Sadly, most insurance providers don’t cover the cost of LASIK, because they rarely ever view it as medically necessary. The good news is that La Jolla LASIK Institute in San Diego offers an array of flexible payment options to help make laser eye surgery affordable to you.

So how much is LASIK in San Diego with insurance?

Although you’ll be hard-pressed to find health insurance coverage that will pay for LASIK, there are a few larger insurance companies such as Blue Cross Blue Shield that may offer a courtesy discount for your surgery by negotiating with your surgeon’s office. So, whether or not your plan covers LASIK, it wouldn’t hurt to ask them about any discounts or special considerations.

How might insurance cover LASIK in San Diego?

It’s not an easy feat, but certain individuals may be able to get their LASIK costs covered by insurance:

  • Some military members, such as special forces, can occasionally get LASIK covered if the job has specific vision requirements. Still, there are other stipulations, such as seeing if you’re a candidate, and, if so, go through a waiting period and surgery performed by military doctors.
  • Some athletes and performers may qualify for coverage if the insurance company agrees the procedure is necessary for the job.
  • People with certain medical conditions, such as people who can’t wear contacts or those with severe cases of eye dryness or allergies, may be able to use insurance for LASIK in San Diego.
  • If safety is a concern when wearing eyeglasses or contacts, such as with police or firefighters, insurance may help out.

Despite documentation of your need for LASIK surgery and no matter how long you’ve tried to struggle through wearing contact lenses or spectacles, don’t count on insurance to cover the cost of your procedure.

How can you afford the best LASIK in San Diego without insurance?

At La Jolla LASIK Institute in San Diego, we understand your frustration with wearing glasses and contacts and dealing with stubborn insurance providers. That’s why we offer a wide range of payment plans and financing options to help you get the improved vision you deserve without a huge financial burden and hassle. For more information or to schedule an appointment for your complimentary consultation, call us at 858-551-4100.