LASEK / PRK
LASEK, or Laser Assisted Subepithelial Keratomileusis, is a modification of the LASIK procedure. The eye is bathed in a special solution. Then a thin flap of corneal tissue is lifted so the central cornea may be treated with an excimer laser. After treatment the flap is replaced and allowed to heal. A contact lens may be worn for a few days until recovery is complete. More of the cornea is exposed for treatment than with LASIK, making LASEK a better choice for patients who require greater vision correction.
PRK or photorefractive keratectomy is one of the safest and most time-tested laser vision correction procedures available. Like LASIK, it reshapes the cornea to improve vision. In PRK the surgeon uses an excimer laser to vaporize a small amount from the top of the cornea. Unlike LASIK no flap is necessary. A small bandage contact lense is placed on the eye for about 3 or 4 days. Until the surface of the eye has healed.
With the advanced VISX Excimer Laser System and CustomVue, FDA studies have shown 98% of qualified patients achieved 20/20 vision without glasses. The risks of PRK are rare but can include infection, haze, slow healing, scarring, over- or under-correction of the visual condition, and development of astigmatism. In most cases with a careful follow-up it is very rare for patients to lose vision after PRK.
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