Like LASIK, PRK (Photorefractive Keratectomy) is a vision correction surgery. It was the first procedure using an excimer laser approved for use in the United States. Used to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism, PRK vision correction surgery is a ‘flap-free’ procedure that has comparable results to LASIK. Because of the similar outcomes, PRK is a common alternative to LASIK.
How is PRK different than LASIK?
PRK was around before LASIK. In both cases, a laser is used to correct refractive issues on the corneal surface. The main difference between PRK and LASIK is how the cornea is accessed. LASIK creates a thin flap on the surface of the cornea. With PRK, the very thin outer layer of the cornea (epithelium) is gently swabbed away to allow your Gulf Coast Eye Institute surgeon access to a larger treatment area. This outer layer naturally regenerates itself after surgery.
Which procedure is right for me?
LASIK is the most widely used refractive procedure performed in the United States today. Most patients report a very high comfort level following the procedure and almost instant improvement in their vision. PRK is most commonly used for patients who have somewhat thin or irregular corneas.
At your free consultation, your Gulf Coast Eye Institute surgeon will recommend the procedure that is best for you.