Frequently Asked Questions

How much does LASIK cost?

Here at Eye Centers of Tennessee the cost of your refractive surgery procedure includes the preliminary evaluation, the drops and medications involved with your surgery, the cost of the actual surgical procedure in our premier surgical facilities and all follow up visits up to a year after your surgery.

Our surgical team here is proud to offer a variety of refractive surgery procedures, each with their own costs. However, if we have not seen you for a refractive surgery evaluation then we cannot know which procedure is right for you. If you would like to learn more about the various procedures we offer, please give us a call or email us and we would love to set up an appointment for you to see Dr. Patterson and help you make an educated decision.

How quickly will I be able to see after surgery?

Advancements in the technology used for LASIK procedures has made the amount of "down time" almost non existent. That being said, everybody heals at their own pace. We have many patients who have returned to the office the day after surgery telling us how ecstatic they were on the ride home to read signs on their own for the first time in their lives.

Everybody's vision will fluctuate after any type of refractive surgery. Some patients are able to read clearly the day after while others have to enlarge the font on their computers for a few days before their vision finally settles down. The amount of time needed for recovery after LASIK surgery is different from a surgery such as PRK though, so the amount of time you will need to see clearly again will be dependent upon the type of procedure recommended to you by Dr. Patterson.

Is it painful?

Before any refractive surgery, patients are given drops to completely numb the eye as well as medicine taken by mouth to help relax them. There is no pain involved with the actual procedure itself. Many patients experience a feeling of slight pressure, but nothing more.

After surgery, each patient receives a number of drops to both help the eye heal quickly and minimize discomfort. Once again, LASIK and PRK differ in this area. Patients who have had LASIK may experience minimal discomfort in the form of dry eyes after surgery. Some patients describe this as a feeling of grit in the eye. This symptom can be relieved with the use of lubricating drops that we provide every patient.

PRK patients however, may experience some discomfort during the first few days after surgery. The difference in the healing processes between these two procedures is in the way the surgery is performed. During LASIK, a flap is created and then laid back over the eye. PRK patients however, do not have a flap. Dr. Patterson puts a contact over each PRK patient's eye to ease the discomfort some patients may experience. All PRK patients are also given comfort drops that should relieve the mild pains associated with the healing process.

How quickly can I go back to work?

Dr. Patterson leaves the decision up to the patient. Some patients are seeing well enough the day after surgery to return to work after their first follow up exam with Dr. Patterson. Other patients prefer to take the day off to recuperate and simply relax and give their eyes some rest. As with the entire healing process, this will vary from patient to patient.

Can you guarantee I won’t have to wear glasses?

The decision to have LASIK is an important one that only you can make. The goal of any refractive surgical procedure is to reduce or eliminate your dependence on corrective lenses. However, we cannot guarantee you will have the results you desire. The vast majority of our patients are extremely happy with their vision after LASIK and can do most activities without dependence on corrective lenses.

What are the risks and side effects associated with LASIK surgery?

One of the most commonly experienced side effects of LASIK is dryness of the eyes. Dr. Patterson carefully screens each patient to find any incidence of dry eyes at the pre-operative evaluation. If there is any hint of dryness, we do whatever necessary to ensure that it will not become a problem for you after LASIK. Sometimes this means forgoing LASIK for certain patients. Another option for some patients with dry eyes is a similar procedure called PRK. Even with careful screening, some patients notice problems from dry eyes after their procedure which must be treated with over-the-counter or prescription eye drops or medications.

Are there other options besides LASIK?

LASIK is not the only refractive surgery we provide at Eye Centers of Tennessee. There are multiple options available to those who wish to live a life free of corrective lenses. To learn about our other procedures please visit the other procedures section of our Web Site. You may also choose to request additional information to learn more about these exciting options.

Financing Options

We offer a number of financing options and affordable payment plans. It is easy to apply online and receive credit approval before you schedule an appointment. You can visit the link below to pre-qualify for financing before your appointment or anytime.


Dr. Larry Patterson has performed thousands of laser vision corrections with outstanding success.


We proudly offer several cosmetic treatments including Latisse, and NeoStrata.

Optical Center

Our opticians are trained to help you find the perfect style, size and color of frames with perfect vision.