How To Get The Best Laser Eye Surgery In The UK
With such a huge number of laser eye surgery clinics in the UK, it can make it difficult to know which clinics are the most experienced and trustworthy.
Clinic Compare has produced this guide on the best laser eye surgery clinics to make it easier for you to find out information about the leading eye care specialists in the UK.
Fill out the form at the top of this page to compare the best clinics in your area.
What Is The Best Laser Eye Surgery Clinic?
Laser eye surgery is becoming an increasingly popular elective procedure, with more than 120,000 people undergoing the treatment every year in the UK alone. To meet this growing demand, there is an increasing number of laser eye surgery clinics appearing across the UK, with most major towns and cities being home to at least two or three top eye care specialists. This can ultimately make it very difficult for patients to decide which clinic to choose to have laser eye surgery.
Clinic Compare has produced this guide on the best laser eye surgery clinics in the UK to help you make an informed decision about which one is right for you. The table below allows you to quickly compare some of the key information about each clinic, including its coverage across the UK, its pricing and finance options, and the services it provides.
More detailed summaries of the best laser eye surgery clinics can be found below. Information about the types of laser eye surgery they offer, as well as their pricing policy, is included.
Suitable for Laser Eye Surgery? Click your age below to find out!
Centre for Sight
Recognised by the ophthalmic industry as a centre of excellence, Centre for Sight specialise in delivering world-class eye care. Well-known for their ground-breaking treatments and state-of-the-art technology, Centre for Sight are the UK’s longest provider of LASIK laser eye surgery. They also offer treatments such as cataract surgery and refractive lens exchange (RLE) surgery.
Located in London, Surrey and Sussex, their fixed prices include a customized treatment plan and free aftercare with a dedicated 24/7 helpline should you need urgent medical advice.
|Eye Surgery Types||LASIK, IntraLase LASIK, RLE, Cataract, ICL|
|Price Range (Per Eye)||£2,300 - £4,250|
London Vision Clinic
Since they were founded in 2002, Harley Street’s London Vision Clinic have specialised in providing cutting-edge laser eye surgery to patients with complex prescriptions. Their treatments include standard laser eye surgery as well as more bespoke procedures such as ReLEx SMILE surgery.
Although their prices are higher than that of other clinics, London Vision Clinic pride themselves on having some of the best laser eye surgeons in the world equipped with the most advanced laser technology available, allowing them to achieve some of the highest standards of eye care.
|Eye Surgery Types||LASIK, IntraLase LASIK, RLE, Cataract, ICL|
|Price Range (Per Eye)||£4,900 - £6,500|
Moorfields Eye Hospital
NHS-governed Moorfields Eye Hospital is situated in the centre of London, and is one of the oldest eye specialist hospitals in the world. Through its private patient business, its dedicated team of 15 consultant ophthalmic surgeons specialise in more than 100 sight correction treatments from cataract surgery to corneal collagen crosslinking for keratoconus.
Although its prices do not include consultation fees, Moorfields has developed an outstanding reputation for patient care, offering surgeon-led consultations and a personalized aftercare plan.
|Eye Surgery Types||LASIK, LASEK, Wavefront technology, RLE, ICL, Cataract|
|Price Range (Per Eye)||£2,000 - £5,000|
Optegra operate 7 dedicated eye hospitals in locations across the UK including Birmingham, London, Bradford and Manchester. They offer a wide range of ophthalmic procedures including laser eye surgery and cataract surgery.
Having treated over a million eyes since they were founded, Optegra have been rated as the UK’s most trusted eye hospital group, with their ophthalmic surgeons being among the most respected in their fields. Their prices include consultation fees, aftercare and a personalised treatment plan, and they offer finance packages should you be unable to pay for your surgery upfront.
|Eye Surgery Types||LASIK, LASEK, ReLEx SMILE, RLE, Cataract|
|Price Range (Per Eye)||£1,795 - £2,495|
Optical Express are the UK’s number 1 provider of laser eye surgery, having treated over two million eyes since they opened in 1991. They have a reputation for excellent clinical standards and high quality patient care, with their highly experienced ophthalmic surgeons having carried out thousands of treatments between them. With 65 clinics across the UK, you won’t have to travel far to get to an eyecare specialist.
Optical Express provide LASEK and LASIK laser eye surgery, as well as lens replacement surgery. All their treatments come with free aftercare for three months following surgery, and they offer a wide range of payment plans to help you spread the cost of your treatment.
|Eye Surgery Types||LASEK, IntraLase LASIK, Wavefront IntraLase LASIK, RLE, ICL, Cataract|
|Price Range (Per Eye)||£595 - £2,995|
Optimax was one of the first private clinics to offer laser eye surgery and has carried out over 380,000 treatments since it was founded in 1991. It has 23 clinics located across the UK including London, Cardiff, Glasgow and Belfast.
Optimax offers a range of corrective ophthalmic procedures, with 96% of its patients who undergo laser eye surgery achieveing 20/20 vision or better. Their prices are fixed meaning they aren’t affected by the complexity of your prescription, and include consultation fees and lifetime aftercare. They also offer a range of finance packages to break up the cost of your treatment into more manageable monthly payments.
|Eye Surgery Types||LASIK, LASEK, Wavefront technology, IntraLase LASIK, RLE, ICL, Cataract|
|Price Range (Per Eye)||£1,695 - £2,995|
Ultralase are long-established vision correction specialists who have been in the market for over 20 years. They strive for the highest standards of clinical excellence and handpick their ophthalmic surgeons using a rigorous selection process to ensure the very best quality treatment for their patients.
Ultralase have clinics across the UK offering both laser eye surgery and lens replacement surgery, with finance options available to help you to spread the cost of your treatment. Their fixed prices include consultation fees and comprehensive aftercare, as well as a free second treatment if necessary.
|Eye Surgery Types||Wavefront LASEK, Wavefront IntraLase LASIK, RLE, ICL, Cataract|
|Price Range (Per Eye)||£1,695 - £2,995|
Choosing A Laser Eye Surgery Clinic
Watch Valerie Saw, Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon at Moorfields Eye Hospital, provide advice on what she believes are the most important things you should factor into your decision when choosing where to have your surgery:
"I think there’s probably three main things that would be helpful to keep in mind. Firstly, to know that your surgeon’s experienced, secondly that your surgeon has a good reputation, and thirdly to make sure that you will get good aftercare and follow up after the surgery. It’s really important to be able to know that you can contact your surgeon if you’re worried about anything after surgery or something doesn’t feel right."
Valerie Saw, Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon at Moorfields Eye Hospital
Your eyesight is hugely important to your quality of life, so it is essential that you visit a trusted and well-known clinic to have your laser eye surgery. When you are researching and looking for an ophthalmic specialist, it is important to consider these factors:
- What types of surgery do they offer? This is the first to check for and it makes narrowing down your list of prospective clinics to a much more manageable number, as any clinics who don’t carry out the surgery you need can be removed from your shortlist.
- Is the clinic easy to travel to? You will be required to visit the clinic on multiple occasions for a consultation, the surgery itself and follow-up appointments. Therefore, you should make sure you are able to get to and from the clinic quickly and easily to avoid any unnecessary hassles.
- Are their prices within your budget? As with any costly purchase, you need to check that you can afford it. If you cannot manage paying for the surgery in one lump sum then the majority of clinics offer payment plans. Every clinic charges their own prices for laser eye surgery based on a number of factors including the technology they use, their location and the prestige of the surgeons, so the prices for treatment can vary significantly.
- How experienced are the surgeons? The majority of eye surgery clinics will have a page about their surgeons to help you make your decision. You will want to know what their qualifications are, where they trained and how long for, how many years of experience they have, and whether they have kept up to date with their training since qualifying as an ophthalmologic surgeon. All working laser eye surgeons in the UK must be registered with the General Medical Council to practice, and more skilled surgeons will also have membership to the Royal College of Ophthalmologists. You should ask them about their success rate, what their former patients have said about them and how many procedures they have performed.
- How new is their laser technology? It’s important to know that you are not only getting the surgery you need but that the surgery is up to date, reliable and safe so make sure you enquire about the systems they use.
- Is there a waiting list? If you are keen to have your surgery performed as soon as possible then it is important that you know how long you might have to wait for your surgery to be performed. Remember: a surgeon with a lengthy waiting list usually means that they are reliable, safe, trustworthy and renowned.
- What do the patient reviews say? Make sure to check former patient reviews on the clinic’s own website or on independent review forums. You do not want to find out that your clinic has a reputation for sloppy or careless customer service before it is too late. Enough information will give a clear indication of the standards and ethics of the clinic and whether or not they would be a suitable option.
- Is the aftercare included in the cost of your procedure? If you are on a budget then the last thing you want is an unexpected bill when you have already had the surgery and can do nothing about it. Make sure you check what is included in the price you are paying.
How To Get Laser Eye Surgery Through A Clinic
In general, laser eye surgery is not available on the NHS for people who want to correct refractive errors such as myopia (short-sightedness), hyperopia (long-sightedness) and astigmatism. This means that the majority of patients have to undergo surgery at a private clinic.
After choosing which clinic you will use for your laser eye surgery, the process will follow these steps:
- You will need to make an appointment at your clinic for your pre-operative consultation which can take up to 2 hours to complete. You will undergo a series of eye tests, as well as be asked questions relating to your health history and lifestyle. Your treatment options will then be discussed thoroughly with you.
- You will then book your surgery day and discuss the cost of your treatment and how you intend to pay for it. Most clinics will allow you to pay the cost upfront, or spread the payment over several months using a finance package.
- On the day of your surgery, you will be made to feel comfortable before the procedure begins. You may be given a mild sedative to help you relax, as well as numbing anaesthetic eye drops. Laser eye surgery typically takes approximately 30 minutes to complete per eye.
- Following surgery you will be shown into a resting room to relax, where the surgeon will carry out some post-operative checks on your eyes to ensure that the treatment has gone smoothly. You will be unable to drive, so will need to arrange for someone to pick you up from the clinic.
- Aftercare is a vital aspect of laser eye surgery. You will be given a bandage lens to wear over your eye and will be prescribed medicated eye drops to prevent infection. Your surgeon will give you a list of post-operative instructions which you must follow in order to ensure the best recovery. If you experience any complications following surgery, you should contact your clinic immediately to receive the appropriate medical advice.