How Much Does LASIK Cost In Washington, DC

Seeing Clearly: Navigating LASIK Costs in the District

Considering LASIK surgery to correct your vision? If you live in or around Washington, DC, this guide to pricing can help illuminate what’s involved. We’ll explore the average how much does lasik cost in Washington, DC, and surrounding suburbs while explaining what pricing factors depend on, additional components beyond the surgery itself, the kinds of discounts or financing offers that may reduce your out-of-pocket expenses, and insurance considerations.

Lasik eye surgery has become an increasingly popular option for people looking to reduce their dependency on glasses or contacts. This laser eye procedure reshapes the cornea to improve vision and reduce refractive errors like nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. With Lasik, many patients are able to achieve 20/20 vision or better without corrective lenses.

The cost of Lasik in Washington, DC can vary widely depending on the patient’s vision needs and the clinic they choose. On average, patients in the DC area pay between $2,000 to $5,000 per eye for Lasik surgery. The total cost of getting both eyes done is generally $4,000 to $10,000.

While this may seem expensive upfront, remember that the investment in Lasik pays off over time. No longer needing glasses or contacts saves money in the long run. There are also financing options available to make Lasik more affordable.

In this guide, we’ll break down the major factors influencing Lasik pricing in Washington, DC, and provide cost ranges from different providers. We’ll also cover how you can pay for Lasik surgery and tips for saving money.

What Is Lasik Treatment?

LASIK (Laser-Assisted in Situ Keratomileusis) is a type of refractive eye surgery that uses a laser to reshape the cornea and improve vision. Here’s a quick overview of how LASIK works:

  • First, a surgeon will create a circular flap in the outer layer of the cornea using either a laser or a specialized blade. This flap is folded back to expose the inner corneal tissue.
  • Next, an excimer laser is used to precisely reshape the inner cornea and correct refractive errors like nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. The laser vaporizes tiny amounts of tissue to make the cornea flatter or steeper.
  • After the cornea is reshaped by the laser, the corneal flap is laid back into place where it adheres without stitches.
  • In the weeks following LASIK surgery, the cornea will heal the microscopic incisions made by the laser in order to reshape itself. Vision improves as the cornea changes shape.
  • Most patients experience significantly improved vision, often to 20/20 levels or better, within a day or two after LASIK surgery. Some visual fluctuations are normal during the initial healing.
  • LASIK is an outpatient procedure that takes 10-20 minutes per eye. It uses only numbing eye drops rather than general anesthesia. Patients can usually return to normal activities within a few days.

How Much Does LASIK Cost In Washington, DC

The average cost of LASIK in Washington, DC ranges from $4,000 to $10,000 for treatment of both eyes. Exact pricing depends on factors like your vision prescription strength, the type of LASIK procedure (standard vs. custom), the provider/surgeon you choose, and any additional technology used. While LASIK is a significant upfront investment, financing plans and savings options can make treatment more affordable. The procedure often pays for itself long-term by reducing or eliminating the need for glasses and contact lenses. When performed by an experienced refractive surgeon, LASIK offers excellent value and can provide lasting vision correction.

Key Factors That Influence the Cost of LASIK in Washington, DC

The overall price you’ll pay for Lasik in DC depends on several important factors:

Your Prescription Strength

The higher your prescription (myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism), the more corrections are needed during Lasik. Complex prescriptions cost more to treat.

Type of Procedure

Standard or custom Lasik impacts price. Custom treatments tailored to your eyes are more expensive.


Prices vary based on the clinic, their experience, and the surgeon performing your procedure.


Lasik’s cost in DC tends to be higher than national averages due to higher overhead costs.

Additional Services/Technology

Advanced screenings, intraoperative imaging, or laser systems add to the base price.

Now let’s look at how each of these factors contributes to the overall Lasik cost in Washington, DC.

Prescription Strength And LASIK Pricing

Your vision prescription is one of the biggest factors impacting the cost of your Lasik procedure. Patients with mild to moderate nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism typically have lower fees.

  • Mild nearsightedness (myopia) of -3.00 D or less generally costs $2,000-$3,500 per eye
  • Moderate nearsightedness of -3.25 to -6.00 D may cost $3,000-$4,500+ per eye
  • High myopia over -6.00 D is $4,500-$5,500+ per eye

For farsightedness (hyperopia)

  • Up to +3.00 D is $2,000-$3,000 per eye
  • +3.25 to +6.00 D is $3,000-$4,500 per eye


  • Up to 2 diopters usually cost $2,500-$3,500 per eye
  • Over 2D may cost $3,500-$5,000 per eye

Keep in mind these prices are just general estimates. The technology used and the skill of your surgeon also impact the Lasik cost. But in general, higher prescriptions require more laser treatment which equates to higher procedure fees.

Standard vs Custom LASIK Treatments

Another factor affecting price is whether you get standard or custom Lasik surgery. What’s the difference?

Standard Lasik

Standard Lasik uses the same laser settings for all patients with similar prescriptions. It treats larger zones of the cornea at once. This offers effective vision correction for many patients but does not account for subtle unique irregularities in each eye.

Standard Lasik in DC costs $2,500-$4,000 per eye on average.

Custom Lasik

Custom Lasik is a more personalized approach. Also known as wavefront-guided Lasik, the laser is programmed with measurements of your eye’s corneal topography. This custom treatment accounts for imperfections that vary eye to eye and corrects smaller zones for improved results.

Custom Lasik in Washington, DC tends to cost $4,000-$5,500+ per eye.

While pricier, custom Lasik is highly recommended for patients who have complex prescriptions, higher-order aberrations, or corneal irregularities. The extra precision it offers can lead to better vision outcomes for these patients.

Benefits And Side Effects Of Standard Vs Custom Lasik Treatments

Here is a table comparing the benefits and potential side effects of standard vs. custom LASIK treatments:

Treatment Type Benefits Potential Side Effects
Standard LASIK – Lower cost procedure – Less personalized to eye irregularities
– Treats wider zone of cornea – Potential under/over-correction
– Effective for many prescriptions – Halos or glare around lights
Custom LASIK – Personalized to eye’s unique topography – Higher out-of-pocket cost
– Improved precision for complex prescriptions – Potential dry eyes
– Reduced risk of halo/glare issues – Short-term visual fluctuations
– Faster visual recovery – Requires more advanced laser technology

Safety And Efficacy Of Standard Vs Custom Lasik Treatments

Here is a table comparing the safety and efficacy of standard vs. custom LASIK treatments:

Treatment Type Safety Efficacy
Standard LASIK – Proven safe track record – 20/20 vision or better for 63-92% of patients*
– Low risk of complications – Reduces or eliminates need for glasses/contacts
– Rapid visual recovery – Less effective for high prescriptions
Custom LASIK – Equally safe as standard LASIK – 20/20 vision or better for 84-98% of patients*
– Minimal risk of side effects – Improved results for high/complex prescriptions
– Advanced laser guided by eye measurements – Up to 70% achieve 20/16 vision or better*

*Results vary based on pre-op prescription and patient healing. Consult your eye doctor.

LASIK Cost by Provider In Washington, DC

There’s quite a range in price between Lasik providers in the DC area. Lasik clinics that are well-established with experienced refractive surgeons often charge higher fees. Newer practices may offer discounts to attract new patients.

Here’s an overview of estimated standard Lasik pricing among some popular providers in Washington, DC:

  • Washington Eye Physicians & Surgeons – $3,000-$4,500 per eye
  • Gordon S. Benson, MD – $2,800-$4,000 per eye
  • National Laser Eye Center – $2,600-$3,500 per eye
  • LasikPlus – $2,200-$3,800 per eye
  • QualSight LASIK – $2,300-$3,700 per eye
  • TLC Laser Eye Centers – $2,200-$3,200 per eye

Many clinics do offer financing plans to help make Lasik more affordable. Just be sure to factor in the total costs including pre-op exams, post-op visits, and any required enhancements. Get a full breakdown upfront so you know the complete pricing.

Cost Differences By Location

Where you live also impacts Lasik costs. Prices in metropolitan areas like Washington, DC tend to be higher than the national average price.

According to a 2022 survey by Jobson Optical Research, the average total price per eye for standard Lasik is $2,639 nationwide.

However, in the Washington, DC region, average Lasik surgery costs range from $3,000-$4,500 per eye as we saw earlier. The increased demand and overhead costs in major cities lead to higher pricing.

Additional Factors Influencing LASIK Cost

A few other factors that can raise the overall price of Lasik eye surgery include:

Laser Systems

Advanced laser platforms like the VISX Star S4 IR Excimer system improve precision but also increase procedure costs.

IntraLase/Femtosecond Lasers

Using a femtosecond laser instead of a manual blade to create the corneal flap adds $500 or more per eye.

Eye Screenings

Diagnostic tests like corneal topography, pachymetry, Orbscan and wavefront exams to determine if you’re a good Lasik candidate cost extra.

Post-Op Visits

Your initial Lasik fee may only include the first 1-2 follow-up visits. Additional appointments cost extra.

LASIK Retreatment

If needed, enhancement procedures usually cost 20-50% of the original price per eye within the first year.

With all the aforementioned factors considered, the typical all-inclusive price per eye for standard Lasik in DC is about $3,000. Custom Lasik is closer to $4,500 per eye on average.

Again, every patient is different. Be sure to meet with your eye doctor and get a personalized cost estimate based on your vision needs.

Now let’s look at ways to pay for Lasik surgery and how you can save money.

How to Pay for LASIK

Laser vision correction is a significant investment. Here are some options to pay for your Lasik procedure:

Insurance Discount Plans

Many practices accept vision insurance discounts, lowering your out-of-pocket costs. VSP offers 15-20% off.

Use Flexible Spending (FSA)

You can pay for Lasik using pre-tax dollars set aside in a flexible spending account.


Many clinics offer multi-year financing for Lasik with monthly payments as low as $100-$150 per month. Terms up to 60 months are available.

Compare Lenders

Banks and credit unions offer Lasik financing plans too. Compare offers to find the best rates.

Healthcare Sharing Programs

Some health-sharing ministries help members pay for Lasik when needed.

Save Up

Open a separate savings account and start funding your Lasik procedure. Apply tax refunds or bonuses towards your vision goal.

Ask About Bundles/Discounts

Get pricing bundles for two eyes. Ask if any current discounts are available.

Tips for Saving Money on Your LASIK Surgery

Here are some extra ways you can save money on your Lasik eye surgery in Washington, DC:

  • Shop around and get free consults with different providers before choosing where to get Lasik done.
  • Ask for student, military, or other discounts that you may qualify for.
  • Time your Lasik for the slow season when clinics tend to offer more promotions and deals. Late fall/winter is ideal.
  • Apply for CareCredit or other medical credit cards with deferred interest promotions. Make sure to pay on time!
  • Inquire about any refund guarantees – some practices offer money-back if vision goals aren’t achieved.
  • Join a Lasik savings club like QualSight to access member-exclusive pricing.
  • Follow clinics on social media for occasional deals like free procedure upgrades announced.
  • Use rewards credit cards and earn points to offset fees.
  • Get screened for Lasik early in the year to use FSA money before expiration.

Who Are Candidates for Lasik Treatment?

Here are the typical criteria for good LASIK candidates:

  • Age 18 or older (21+ ideal for stabilization)
  • Have healthy eyes with no infections or eye diseases
  • Have a stable vision with no changes in prescription for 1-2 years
  • Have moderate to high degree of nearsightedness/farsightedness/astigmatism
  • Corneas thick enough for safe reshaping (500+ microns)
  • Pupils large enough to allow adequate laser treatment
  • Realistic expectations of outcomes and understanding of risks
  • Willing to use medicated eye drops post-surgery for a few weeks
  • Not pregnant or nursing currently

Those who may not be good candidates include people with very high prescriptions, very flat/steep corneas, corneal scars, small pupils, thin corneas, and certain medical conditions like autoimmune disease, diabetes, keratoconus, and dry eyes. Always consult an ophthalmologist to determine your eligibility. LASIK can correct a wide range of prescriptions when performed by an experienced refractive surgeon.

FAQs on LASIK Cost in DC

What is the most expensive LASIK option?

Wavefront-guided IntraLase LASIK often tops pricing at around $6,000 per eye on average. The advanced wavefront diagnostics and bladeless IntraLase laser provide ultra-precise vision customization though.

How can I save money on LASIK in DC?

Explore student, employer, and military discounts which often reduce costs by 20% to 50%. Shop pricing between area LASIK centers for competition. Avoid unnecessary lifestyle add-ons that won’t benefit you.

Does insurance cover LASIK?

Unfortunately, original Medicare and most private insurances do not cover Lasik surgery since it is considered an elective, cosmetic procedure. Vision insurance plans only offer discounts on the price.

Can I use my HSA for LASIK?

Yes, you can use pre-tax money in a Health Savings Account (HSA) to pay for Lasik if you have one. Keep records for reimbursement.

What is included in the total LASIK cost?

The initial Lasik fee quoted typically covers your pre-operative exam, the procedure itself, medications, and the first 1-2 follow-up visits. If you need to return for additional follow-ups or an enhancement, those incur extra charges.

How much are monthly payments for LASIK financing?

Monthly payments for multi-year Lasik financing usually range from $100 to $250 depending on the loan terms. Many practices offer 0% interest deals for 24 months or longer.

When is the best time to get a discount on LASIK?

Most clinics offer specials seasonally in the late fall and winter months when demand tends to be lower. You can save 10-20% versus peak surgery times in spring/summer.

How long is recovery after LASIK?

The eye visual recovery time is usually quick – within 24 to 72 hours. Most patients are able to drive and return to work within 72 hours post-surgery if they can work on a computer. Full recovery of optimal vision can take up to 6 months.

Last Words

The typical cost of LASIK in Washington, DC ranges from $4,000-$10,000 for both eyes. While the price may seem high, the long-term savings and freedom from glasses and contacts make it worthwhile for many patients. With financing options and using tax-advantaged funds, you can invest in a better vision.

The most important thing is choosing an experienced, reputable provider. Carefully review your surgeon’s credentials and get a personalized price quote based on your vision needs. Ask what’s included before committing. This will ensure you get the highest quality vision correction with lasting results.

Just remember to account for both prep and follow-up visits beyond the LASIK surgery itself when budgeting total expenses. If premium diagnostics and customization won’t provide added benefits for your needs, cost-saving options keep vision correction within reach. Thanks to continually advancing laser precision, over 95% of patients now qualify for safe, effective LASIK outcomes from DC region providers.


My name is Selina, a medical specialist blogger helping people access treatment for 5+ years. Although blogging awhile, only recently deeply engaged. This past year my most productive, providing hospital reviews and info on symptoms, diagnoses and diseases. Also offer guidelines to help readers navigate healthcare. Goal to continue increased content pace to assist many. Aim to facilitate treatment and empower advocacy through writing.

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