Photorefractive Keratectomy (PRK) Laser Vision Correction

Prk Laser Vision Correction

PRK is a lot easier on the eyes than "photo refractive keratectomy" but still involves a form of laser vision correction similar to LASIK surgery. As with most LASIK procedures, while the name is difficult to pronounce, the surgery itself is quite short and simple.

Like other forms of LASIK, surgeons can use PRK to correct moderate nearsightedness, astigmatism and farsightedness typically. There are many similarities between PRK and LASIK, however surgeons often elect PRK for patients with complications including flat or steep corneas. Patients with these conditions typically do not qualify for traditional surgery. Like Epi-LASIK, PRK specializes in the difficult and irregular eyeball.

How PRK Works
Your healthcare provider can decide whether you are a good (or bad) candidate for PRK. Typically during this procedure, an excimer laser will remove corneal tissue to help the surgeon reshape your eye.

In times of old, surgeons would use a radial keratomy procedure to cut the epithelium of the cornea. This allowed surgeons to then reshape the eye. PRK now allows surgeons to sculpt the eye more precisely. Typically this procedure enables a surgeon to reduce the thickness of patient's eyes up to 30%. The amount of correction applied depends on the original shape of the patient's cornea.

A doctor adopting PRK technology typically maps the amount of visual correction needed prior to surgery.

Preparation And Recover From Surgery
Before enjoying the PRK procedure, your healthcare provider will likely recommend you not wear contact lenses to help your cornea return to its "normal" state. This allows for more precise correction.

On the day of surgery most doctors apply an anesthetic to the eye to help prevent pain and discomfort. A surgeon will then use one of many lasers to help reshape the cornea. Most procedures involves use of a laser called the VISX. This machine is capable of correcting most cases of refractive error.

During your consultation you might consider asking your doctor what type of laser they plan to use and why the selected it. This will help you gain a better understanding of the technology underlying your laser vision correction.

Recovery From PRK
Like most LASIK procedures, most patient recover from PRK quickly and simply. Typically a surgeon applies a protective lens or contact over the eye for up to 5 days to help promote healing. Your surgeon may recommend you avoid strenuous physical activity or sports that may result in injury to the eye. There are many advantages of PRK including the ability to correct vision in patients with steep cornea. Patients going into the procedure should know however, that not all will experience perfect vision following surgery. Some may still need to wear corrective lenses for certain activities (like reading).

The good news is complications associated with PRK are minimal, and typically limited to infection. Most surgeons can treat this side-effect easily by using antibiotics. Patients with severe visual disturbances may not be ideally suited for this form of surgery. Talk with your doctor to find out whether PRK may provide the magic bullet you are looking for when it comes to your vision.

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