In the myopic eye the image does not reach the back part of the eye (the retina). In the myopic eye the cornea and lens are too curved and focus the image to a point in front of the retina, the image is then seen as a blur. Only by moving up close to the image will it be shifted on to the retina and seen clearly. Myopic people can see up close, but need glasses or contact lenses to see far away.

LASIK involves slightly flattening the cornea which is the curved rounded front surface of the eye; the image is then clearly focused on the retina. Modern surgical techniques can correct or significantly reduce almost all cases of myopia.