Starburst effect, or starbursting, is a common complication of laser eye surgery, reported more commonly by individuals with large pupils and in a more severe form. Starbursts differ in terms of their size: Some people see larger starbursts than others. In most cases the size and severity of starbursts depends on the size of the patient's pupils at night relative to the size of the laser treatment zone. Also, some starbursts are more transparent, consisting only of fine rays, while others are denser, obscuring the entire light source. Some patients report that the rays are longer in one direction than another which may be due to an off-center laser treatment. Some rays are thicker than others.
Driving at night can be extremely dangerous for laser eye surgery patients. Some studies report that the night vision of up to 50% of patients is severely compromised. Some patients eventually get used to seeing small starbursts at night, but patients with large pupils who experience large starbursts may be incapacitated and unable to function at night.
Some images courtesy VisionSimulations.com