LASIK Surgery, or laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis if you hate acronyms, is an increasingly popular form of vision correction that can dramatically improve your vision and provide a permanent alternative to glasses or contacts. Millions of people have undergone this minimally-invasive surgery and received incredible results, but some of the more prominent patients may surprise you.
We put together a list of the six athletes we think best showcase the benefits of LASIK, while also showing that LASIK can be a benefit to almost anyone. These eight athletes have all had their vision improved with LASIK. Some of them you may be aware of, but some of them just might surprise you.
Miami Heat’s – Amar’e Stoudemire
Amar’e Stoudemire has had a rough time lately with several seasons in a row plagued by chronic knee problems, but despite this he is still one of the most well-respected players in the NBA. Stoudemire was awarded the honor of Rookie of the Year in 2003, earned a bronze medal with the U.S. Men’s National Team of the 2004 Olympics, and is a six-time NBA All-Star. Stoudemire has been successful on and off the court and at least some of that success is attributed to the better vision he received from LASIK surgery. As of July, 2015 Stoudemire plays for the Miami Heat, and is known for the goggles he wears to protect his eyes following his surgery.
Miami Heat’s – Dwyane Wade
Speaking of the Miami Heat, three-time NBA Champion, and career All-Star Dwyane Wade has also undergone LASIK to improve his vision. The shooting guard and former member of the most talked about trio in sports, the “Big Three,” Wade is one of the best players currently in the NBA. Wade is one of the most visually-creative players in the NBA and has consistently given All-Star performances since he was drafted in 2003. He is also one of few NBA players that can claim to have started in and won back-to-back championship games, in his case in 2012 and 2013.
Miami Heat’s – LeBron James
Wrapping up the NBA contingent of this list, we have perhaps greatest active player, LeBron James. James was a first round draft pick, ironically enough, in the same year as both Amar’e Stoudemire and Dwyane Wade. He has two championship rings with the Miami Heat alongside fellow LASIK patient and teammate Wade. He has also been the recipient of four most valuable player awards, two Olympic gold medals, a scoring title, and a rookie of the year award.
As recipient of all these accolades, it should come as no surprise that he is also the all-time leading scorer for the Cleveland Cavaliers, and indeed he can arguably be credited with bringing the Cavs up to the top tier of the NBA after he lead them to their first Finals appearance in 2007. James underwent LASIK surgery just a short time before Wade in 2007.
Golf Phenom – Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods was the most dominant and highest paid athlete in sports for a very long time. His talent has landed him more career major wins than anyone else in the game, the second most championship wins, and seat at the top of the highest paid golfers for 10 seasons.
Woods is spoken of constantly when it comes to naming the greatest athletes of the past several decades. Had it not been for some personal indiscretions that led to some drama off the green, and a major back surgery that followed it, Woods might still be one of the most dominant figures in sports.
Former Dallas Cowboys Quarterback – Troy Aikman
Troy Aikman played for the Dallas Cowboys from 1989 until his retirement in 2000 following a struggle with chronic back pain and a concussion-producing hit that ended his final season. During his time with the Dallas Cowboys, he was selected for the Pro Bowl six times, and helped lead the Cowboys to three Super Bowl championships, one of which resulted in him being selected as MVP. Aikman was nominated for and elected to both the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2006 and the College Football Hall of Fame in 2008.
Aikman is consistently mentioned when it comes to talking about the all-time best quarterbacks to ever play in the NFL, and LASIK surgery has certainly helped his career. After his retirement, Aikman became a sportscaster for the Fox network, a position he still holds.
Stock Race Car Driver – Kevin Harvick
Kevin Harvick is the reigning Nascar Sprint Cup Series Champion after winning the title last year. Harvick is one of the most well-known driver’s in the sport, with 60 overall wins and over 250 top ten finishes in the Sprint Cup Series alone to his name. Harvick’s career began in 2000 with a rookie of the year award, and he hasn’t looked back since.
He has competed in all three major Nascar series, including the Sprint Cup Series, Xfinity Series, and Camping World Truck Series. Between these three, Harvick has started in nearly one thousand races, with almost 50 of those being poll-position starts.
He stated in an interview about undergoing LASIK, “I’ve always been right-eye dominant. I tend to focus on the racetrack more with my right eye and I was susceptible to headaches so I thought it was time to get it done.”
For a man with a day-job that lives for 200 mile-an-hour thrills, we’re certainly glad he decided to have the best vision possible.
Aim High with Your Vision Similar to These Athletes
These great athletes have all improved in their careers, and in large part they have their LASIK surgeons to thank for the high quality vision correction. Hopefully the tales of their success will put to rest any misconceptions about LASIK being treatment for those in their “twilight years” or with a less active lifestyle. The truth of the matter is, LASIK surgery makes a dramatic improvement in the life of anyone suffering from visual miscues or obstacles that limit physical activities.
If you would like to know more about how LASIK has the ability to change your life, athlete or not, contact the Advanced Eye Medical Group to schedule a consultation.