TLCVision® has named Richard Levinson, MD as one of their Top 50 Laser Vision Correction Surgeons, selected from over 1000 LASIK Surgeons, nationally. This is the eighth consecutive year that Dr. Levinson has won this award.
Richard A. Levinson, M.D.
Lasik Surgeon Serving Colorado in
Denver, Boulder, and the Denver Metro Area
Are you intrigued by the idea of
being able to see, without needing your glasses or contact lenses?
Have you considered Laser Vision Correction?
Welcome to my website. I want to
provide you with extensive, up-to-date, accurate information about Laser Vision Correction.
This website is written by me, Richard
Levinson, M.D. a very actively practicing Board Certified
Ophthalmologist and Laser Vision Surgeon. I have been in private practice in
Denver, Colorado since 1979 and have performed thousands of Laser
Vision Correction procedures since Laser Vision Correction was FDA
approved in 1995. My office is located at Rose Medical Center in
Denver and you can contact my office at 303.393.0347.
of this website is to provide you with up-to-date, accurate,
realistic information on Laser Vision Correction (LASIK
and PRK), to give you
my assessment of the benefits,
of Laser Vision Correction and to try and help you understand and
address the fears
that you may experience concerning Laser Vision Correction. I want
to give you information
to help you decide if Laser Vision Correction is right for you.
And if it is right for
you, I want you to have information to help
you select your Laser Vision Surgeon from the over
40 Laser Centers in the Denver-Boulder area, discussing with you
why I think it is so important for you to have your Laser
Vision Correction Surgeon personally involved
in every step of your surgery and pre- and post-op care, and discussing
how the price you pay will impact the outcome
of your Laser Vision Procedure. I will explain the benefits of Visx
Custom Vue Wavefront technology, stress the difference
between the microkeratome (i.e. metal blade) and the IntraLase
Femtosecond Laser for making the LASIK flap, explain
why the IntraLase Laser is safer and provides you better LASIK results
than the microkeratome and tell you why NASA
has approved iLASIK for U.S. Astronauts. iLASIK is the
name for the procedure when the Visx CustomVue Excimer Laser is
used in combination with the IntraLase Femtosecond Laser. I will
provide you information on my
fees for LASIK and PRK, telling you about my free Lifetime
Promise Agreement, to
retreat you, if ever needed, at no additional charge.
invite you to read the entire website, but to save you time, I want to summarize
for you the two major points of this website.
1. Laser Vision Correction is an excellent
procedure. If you are a good candidate for Laser Vision Correction
and if the procedure is performed correctly with state-of-the-art
technology, Laser Vision Correction is an extremely safe procedure,
and you will be very satisfied with your Laser Vision Correction
results. 98% of people are able to function without glasses or contacts
after Laser Vision Correction. If safety and quick visual recovery
are your highest priorities, I would strongly recommend that you
have LASIK and have your procedure performed with iLASIK,
the Visx Star S4
Custom Vue Wavefront Excimer Laser and the IntraLase
Femtosecond Laser used together in combination. And
if safety is your highest priority, and you don't object to a little
discomfort and a slightly slower visual recovery, consider Custom
PRK. iLASIK is extremely safe but PRK is even safer!
are considering Eye Surgery, not a weekend get-a-way to Cabo. At
this point, if you are searching the Internet for information on
Laser Vision Correction, you are also, basically, "shopping".
When we "shop the Internet", as we typically do for electronics, airline tickets, hotel, rental car rates, etc., we are, or
at least I am, looking for bargains. And that's good! You can
pretty much assume that if you rent a Toyota Camry unlimited mileage for $99 a
day from Hertz or for $29 a day from cheaptickets.com, you'll
get the same basic car and the same vacation outcome. But Laser Vision Correction is not performed identically with uniform quality and results at every Laser Center. And that's the problem.
Thinking like a consumer is not really applicable to Laser Vision
Correction. You are a consumer when you are deciding where to have
your Laser Vision Correction, but the moment you begin the process
of having surgery, from your first preoperative visit, through the
surgery itself, to the last postoperative visit, you are a patient.
Thinking like a consumer (shopping is fun!) is different than thinking
like a patient (this is serious!). As a consumer- let the buyer beware-
we are influenced by emotion. Here are some real examples
of how we are influenced as consumers by Laser Vision Centers in
Denver: The price they gave me was REALLY good; They are going to
give me a free HDTV; I liked that they had a Starbucks in the waiting
room; One of the Denver Broncos or Avalanche hockey
players went there (How comforting is that? Would you really trust
a pro athlete's judgment in selecting an Eye Surgeon? Don't
pro athletes have a very high pain tolerance?).
Ugh! Now here are some suggesions on how to think like a well-informed
First, you need to understand who should be doing what in the Laser Vision Correction procedure. Laser Vision Correction Eye Surgery
is performed by Ophthalmologists
- MD Eye Surgeons. Most people, quite understandably,
aren't aware and probably don't care about the difference between
an Ophthalmologist and an Optometrist. However, if you are considering
Laser Vision Correction, you need to understand the difference between
the two types of "eye doctors" because this difference
will impact the quality of care you receive. An Ophthalmologist
is an Eye Surgeon who, after four years of college, goes to four
years of Medical School, and then has four additional years of medical/surgical
residency training, specializing in surgical and medical treatment
of the human eye. Ophthalmologists are "real doctors". Optometrists are "eye doctors", too,
but they do not go to Medical School. They go to Optometry School
where they are trained primarily to fit glasses and contact lenses.
Optometrists have no formal training or experience in surgery of
the human eye. Optometrists are conscientious, nice people, but
they are not Eye Surgeons. The Ophthalmologist, the Laser
Vision Eye Surgeon, is the one who will be using very powerful Lasers
on your eye. So, the most important criteria that you should consider
when you select where to have your Laser Vision Surgery is, obviously,
the Ophthalmologist, the Laser Vision Surgeon.
You have two basic choices in selecting
a Laser Surgeon. You can either directly, yourself, select an Ophthalmologist
Laser Surgeon in private practice, (for example, me), who will take complete responsibility
for every step of your Laser Vision Procedure. This, in my opinion,
is good. Or you can select a "Laser Center" where the
Ophthalmologist Laser Surgeon is selected for you by the "Laser
Center" and is typically a salaried-employee, only partially,
and mostly indirectly, involved in your care, a "cog"
in an assembly-line process where Optometrists provide most of your
care. These "Laser Centers" want to downplay the significant
distinction between Ophthalmologists and Optometrists. This, in
my opinion, is not so good.
I know I am repeating myself, but once
again, in my opinion, the "key" to a successful Laser
Vision Surgery outcome for you is that the Laser Surgeon is extremely
experienced in Laser Vision Surgery, is an Ophthalmologist in private practice, not an employee at a "Laser Vision Center", and will take complete responsibility
for and be directly involved in every step and every detail of your
Laser Vision Procedure. This means that the Laser Surgeon meets
with you at the initial consultation to determine if you are, or
are not, a good candidate for Laser Vision Correction, meets with
you at every pre-op and post -op visit, and performs your Laser
Vision Procedure. If you are not meeting the MD Ophthalmologist
Laser Surgeon at every visit, the Laser Vision Surgeon is delegating
responsibility for your Laser Vision Procedure to non-MD
optometrists, technicians or sales people. This is not
the meticulous commitment by the Ophthalmologist Laser Surgeon that
you want and this is not in your best interest.
I am almost done repeating myself about
how important I feel it is for the Ophthalmologist to meet with
you at every visit. Here is one last thought I want to share with
you. Fortunately, complications after Laser Vision Surgery are not
common, but they do occur. And if they do occur, most complications
are usually easily managed if promptly and accurately diagnosed
and appropriately treated. I feel very strongly that you would want
the Ophthalmologist, Laser Vision Surgeon, not an Optometrist, seeing
you at every one of your post-op visits to diagnose and treat complications.
And what if you have a problem at night or on weekends? Do you think
the Ophthalmologist at a "Laser Center", the one who won't
even see you during regular business hours, will be on call and
available to see you if you have a problem at night, on weekends
or on holidays? (I give my surgical patients my cell phone number
so they can call me directly if they have a concern.) I would suggest
that you ask any Laser Center you are considering for your surgery:
Who is providing emergency coverage if a problem may occur after
regular business hours or on weekends?
So here is your assignment when you
go for you Laser Vision Consultation. Directly ask the "doctor"
you meet at your initial consultation at the Laser Center you are
visiting: "Are you the Ophthalmologist Laser Vision Surgeon
who will be performing my Laser Vision Procedure and seeing me at
all my pre-op and post-op visits?" And if you aren't meeting
the MD Ophthalmologist Laser Surgeon at your initial consultation,
I think you should go elsewhere for your Laser Vision Surgery. The
following Laser Centers in the Denver area are staffed by Optometrists
who will primarily provide your pre-op and post-op care: ICON, 20/20
Institute, LasikPlus, Laser Vision Institute, TLC, Omni Eye Specialists,
Hines-Sight, InSight Laser Center, Spivack Vision Center and Dishler
Vision Center. If you don't care that your Ophthalmologist Laser
Surgeon has delegated significant responsibility for your Laser
Vision Procedure to non-MD optometrists and technicians, then go
to any one of the above listed "Laser Centers", they are
essentially interchangeable. (Incidentally, these "Laser Centers"
are usually not less expensive than Ophtalmologists in private practice. And be prepared to be confronted
with aggressive, high-pressured "sales" tactics at most
of these "Laser Centers"!) If you want the Ophthalmologist
Laser Surgeon actively involved in every step of your Laser Vision
Procedure, select an Ophthalmologist Laser Surgeon in private practice,
not an Ophthalmologist associated with a "Laser Center".
If you live in a large city like Denver
where you have many Ophthalmologist Laser Surgeons available to
you, I see no reason for you to have optometrists, technicians or
"sales persons" responsible for the outcome of your Laser
Vision Procedure. If the Laser Vision Surgeon does not meet with
you at your initial consultation, go elsewhere to have your Laser
Vision Surgery. And when you meet the Laser Vision Surgeon, trust
your judgment. Does the Surgeon seem competent, caring, open and
honest with you in determining if you are a good candidate for Laser
Vision Correction and in discussing the benefits, risks and limitations
you can realistically expect from Laser Vision Correction? If you
are comfortable with the Laser Vision Surgeon, proceed. If not,
I recommend that you start your visit
to this website by reading the "How
to Select Your LASIK Surgeon" and the
"LASIK FAQ page".
I would also ask you to consider "Custom
Wavefront LASIK" which has been providing outstanding
results to my Laser Vision patients. Finally, I want to remind you
about our free "Lifetime
Promise Agreement". And if you have any
questions, please feel free to call my office at 303.393.0347, or
toll free at 1.877.393.0347. Before choosing your Laser Vision Surgeon,
I encourage you to visit two or three different Laser Centers. And
I cordially invite you to schedule a visit with me and my staff.
We offer a complimentary (free!) consultation where you will meet
both me, Dr. Levinson, and my staff. We will determine if you are
a candidate for Laser Vision Correction and help you decide if Laser
Vision Correction is safe and beneficial for you.
Rose Medical Plaza,
4545 East Ninth Avenue, #270, Denver, CO 80220