News of the suicide of Fox 2 Detroit meteorologist Jessica Starr has added to an ongoing conversation about the risks of Lasik eye surgery.
In June, The New York Times reported on documented cases of painful side effects and vision anomalies resulting from laser vision correction surgery. In some rare cases, the chronic pain and blurred vision experienced by patients after the procedure was so great that it had driven them to suicide.
The report came just six months before Starr, 35, took her life after openly struggling with dry eye and pain resulting from a Lasik SMILE procedure she received in October, which kept her from returning to work.
While Starr's Lasik SMILE complications have not been officially confirmed as a factor in her suicide, her struggle with recovery was documented on Facebook.
"Thank you for all the well wishes and wondering where I've been," Starr said in a video posted in November. "I am struggling a little bit so I need all those prayers and well wishes because this has been a hard go."
The NYT report details a similar experience with the struggle of Geobanni Ramirez, a graphic artist who, more than two years following a Lasik procedure, continues to experience extreme light sensitivity, triple vision, visual distortions, and severe dry eye — the price of getting 20/20 vision.
"My vision is considered
Ramirez told the NYT that following the procedure, he has to put drops in his eyes twice an hour and often feels a burning pain he compares to that experienced while chopping onions.
Since the Food and Drug Administration green-lighted laser corrective procedures in the '90s, more than 9.5 million American's have opted for laser corrective surgery in lieu of wearing glasses or contact lenses.
The procedure Starr elected to do, however, is fairly new. Approved by the FDA in 2016, Lasik SMILE (or small incision
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