World’s Hardest Questions (for lasik surgeons)

If you print out this sheet, Dr. Joseph Lee will, for the record, put his signature on every sheet for you.

If you can find another doctor in SOCAL that can answer all these questions better than Dr. Lee and the other doctor is willing to sign on every sheet, once we confirm it to be accurate, Lasik Eye Center will provide a $5000 award (updated February, 2015). The last question is irrelevant!  Most local surgeons cannot answer even the first 10 questions well.

Please note that lasik consultations are free;  however, if you have previously had refractive surgery (lasik, prk, or rk), there is a $150 charge.  Second opinions often take more time for the surgeon and staff and it is routine in the refractive surgery industry to charge for second opinions.  Thank you for understanding.


Have you ever used the Alcon Ladarvision excimer system on a patient?

No.  I strongly believed it to be an inferior product although UCLA (and most of my competitors) were users.  Most  of my nearby competitors used this system as their primary lasik laser for over 8 years.  Over the years, all the many issues with this system manifested and recently Alcon has  stopped support for the system (can I say…  I told you so?).

If you place a Styrofoam cup with water in it on the floor next to your laser and then jump up and down a few feet away from the cup, will you see ripples of water in the cup?

No.  The stability of the floor is critical to consistent laser energy.  The more energy fluctuations in the laser, the higher the chance of needing an enhancement surgery.

Have you ever performed lasik with your laser on a wooden floor?

No.   Lasers are not as stable on a wooden floor and the energy emanating from the laser fluctuates much more when the laser system is on a wooden floor.

How many ICL’s have you put into patients?

None.  And proud of it.  Technically, it’s not a difficult surgery.  No cataract surgeon will say that a dense cataract surgery is easier than inserting an ICL into a young patient (and I perform cataract surgery on dense cataracts well).  I don’t perform the ICL procedure (although financially very rewarding, up to $12,000 for both eyes) because I can’t in good faith see myself performing it on my friends or family.

Have you ever performed an LTK, CK, ALK, or ICL?

No, no, no and NO.

How many Elite reviews do you have on

Between my three locations, more than 25 Elite reviews. That is by far the most in the United States. If you are uncertain about your own research into Lasik doctors, you can be certain that these 25 elite reviewers have done more research into Lasik than you can in a year.

Are your filtered reviews on better or worse than your current reviews?

My filtered reviews on are at least as good as my current reviews.
Filtered reviews on can be seen at the bottom of the page.  I’m not speaking for Yelp, but I would guess that Yelp filters reviews because Yelp considers them fake or made up, or written by the business.  I guarantee that even all my filtered reviews were written by my patients.  I have by far the lowest percentage of filtered reviews for any Lasik doctor in California with over 20 reviews.  I think that means Yelp’s complicated supercomputer thinks I’m more honest.

How many patients do you typically reject for lasik surgery when they come in for a consult?

About 25 percent.  I believe I have turned down more prospective patients that come to see me for lasik than any other lasik surgeon in the LA area.  That’s not to say I don’t perform difficult lasik cases.  I have performed many high myopic cases (about half my patients are of Asian descent, and they typically have higher degrees of myopia).  One day a few months ago, I (very nicely) turned away 5 prospective patients in a row.

Did you personally perform Lasik for Tiger Woods?

No. And no other Lasik doctor that resides in California has either.

Have your Lasik patients ever misunderstood you to have claimed you did lasik for Tiger Woods?

No. I never misled anyone into thinking I performed lasik for Tiger woods.

Have you personally checked the refraction for every patient you have done Lasik for?

Yes. For over 70,00 Lasik cases. In over 99% of cases, Ive personally checked the refraction twice.

Have you personally washed the instruments for every patient you have performed Lasik for?

Yes. I have personally washed the instruments for every patient I have performed Lasik for, in my 3 offices.

Have you ever performed Lasik for a patient where the flap thickness ended up being greater than 50% of the original cornea thickness?


How many cases of moderate Lasik flap wrinkles have you had where the wrinkles remained even after your attempt to repair?

Several. But none in the past 9 or so years. I have developed and use a new flap striae removal technique that is extremely efficient at removing even very faint wrinkles. One published paper reported the incidence of flap microstriae after lasik was about 94%. I have arguably the best technique in the world to deal with flap microstriae.

Who was your first human Lasik patient and did that patient know he/she was your first Lasik patient?

My older brother was my first Lasik patient. Yes, he knew I had never done Lasik on anyone before.  If a Lasik doctor cannot tell you who their first Lasik patient was, there is a good chance that they lied to someone.

How many close relatives have you performed lasik for?

My brother was my first case.  My wife is an ophthalmologist and I performed lasik for her.  My brother’s wife was a moderate to high myopic case and my patient.  My wife’s brother had high astigmatism and I did lasik for him.  My wife’s sister had lasik by me.  Over 25 extended family including second cousins and cousins children…had lasik by me.

How many employees of Cedars Sinai Hospital have you performed lasik for?

Well over 400 employees.  At least Half the HR department at Cedars Sinai Hospital have had lasik performed by me.  Thank you to them (S and T) for all the referrals!!

Can you take your excimer laser apart into a 1000 pieces, reassemble it without help, and make it work as well as the engineers?

Yes.   I am certain that no other Lasik doctor in California can do that.  Furthermore, if the laser engineer chats with me (as many have), they will agree (within about 10 minutes) that they have not met another lasik surgeon that knows as much about the Nidek laser as I do.  I believe that I know more about the inner workings of the Nidek laser than any other lasik surgeon in the world.  Nidek actually wrote a letter to me (years ago) stating that I had improved the results of the Nidek laser with my research for every lasik surgeon who uses the Nidek laser.

Have you ever had a California Medical Board complaint by a patient you performed Lasik for? Can you list what those complaints were?

I have never had a Lasik patient complain to the Board. Second question, not applicable.  In all my years, I have had only one complaint with the California Medical Board and that was by a patient I refused to do Lasik for.

Have you been beaten in Ping Pong in the past 15 years?

No.  Maybe a single game, but never best out of three or best out of five.  This just means that my surgical skills aren’t shabby (my hand eye coordination works).  But, don’t base my surgical skills on my golf form.  I do talk smack as nicely as possible before a ping pong game, but then…  I live up to it.  I once performed lasik for a minister of a Korean Church who had not lost a single match in ping pong in over 10 years.  He had a very large congregation and played every weekend.  Of course, we had to play.  He brought his own paddles with covers.  I had my $15 paddle.  I took 3 out  of 4 games 😉  I felt like Forrest!




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