Contrary to, I assume, most other posters, I have had eye surgery some years ago. Although I did not have a great amount of myopia, I required corrective lenses for day-to-day activity.
I researched the matter a long time ago and came to the conclusion that, as others have mentioned, the whole thing follows a bit of a factory line approach and anyone who could afford a machine (and many who couldn't) were offering the treatment regardless of experience or qualifications.
I assumed that if that was possible without them being shut down by administrative intervention or, more likely, bad publicity, it was because the risk (likelihood) was low and the machine does most of the work, requiring no more than a well-trained operator to push the button. Still, since I only have my own two eyes, I gave it a miss.
Fast-forward about a decade and because of a bid at a career change that required 20/20 vision in addition to being an active sportsman, I decided to take the risk, whatever the worst-case scenario consequences. I did my research again and went to the place where I felt most confident doing it in Europe, an eye clinic. In the meanwhile, the technology had advanced too so that was a bit of a bonus.
There are various types of corrective surgery and I had one called wavefront PRK, which was indicated by my sports physician on account of being a boxer.
A post-op in-depth examination by the UK Civil Aviation Authority (required for me to regain my Class I medical certificate) revealed that my vision is better than 20/20 on one eye, and both my night vision and lateral vision (can't recall what it's actually called) have improved and are better than average for a control group of non-treated individuals (the CAA, Qinetiq / MoD, and can't remember were doing a study at the time) . Apparently, this is a common outcome on pilots subject to PRK (over 50%).
All this to say:
* Yes, there are risks (remember: risk = probability * severity) and the consequences are potentially very serious even if the probability is low (and therefore the overall risk is low).
* Yes, there are lots of charlatans and people who probably should not be attempting to offer these services, even if technically the risk is low. There is definitely a production line feel to it in most places.
* For some people, the benefit may be marginal, purely aesthetic or a matter of convenience, while for others it is more life-changing (I couldn't have opted to the job I was after, and it offered a significant advantage in my sports activity). To each to evaluate their circumstances, which only they are in a position to do.
* It should be fucking obvious to any responsible adult that, however small the risk, statistically a certain number of cases will not achieve the desired results, which is why it is up to each one of us to make a decision based on as much information as we are able to access and understand. I consider that it is the individual's responsibility to research for that information from reliable sources, and contrast it.
Now, this Ms Rodoy says that she would "fight on until this industry is regulated and the serious risks publicised." Well, there are two problems that make her alleged goals invalid:
1. The industry *is* already regulated--perhaps what she means is that the regulation can be improved?
2. As for the "serious risks", what evidence has she in respect of the risks being "serious"? Or perhaps she means the "potential consequences"? Risk is one of those terms that most laymen seem to to misinterpret, bit like mass and weight.
In any event, I trust that she has pursued her claims through the courts and the relevant medical authority? What was the result of that? What did consumer organisations say about her case? In what respect a hearsay website is meant to help, even assuming that her goals were restated in some valid form?
It is not so much the whiff of blackmail in this case as her own attempt at FUD that bothers me. In the same way that certain potential customers could be misinformed by providers, she could be scaring away people who, on the balance of probabilities, would significantly benefit from undergoing treatment.