What Is PRK (Photorefractive Keratectomy)?

PRK surgery (which stands for “Photorefractive Keratectomy”) is a laser vision correction procedure that may be an option for those who may not be candidates for LASIK. PRK is commonly known as “LASIK without the flap.” Instead of making a thin flap in the cornea as is done in LASIK, the laser treatment in PRK is applied to the surface of the cornea, eliminating all potential complications of a LASIK flap.

What Happens During The Procedure?

With PRK, your individual prescription is used to calculate the amount of the corneal tissue that needs to be removed to correct your vision. An excimer laser delivers a programmed number of pulses of cool ultraviolet light. Each pulse removes a microscopic layer of the cornea thus reshaping the cornea to the appropriate shape.

How Does PRK Compare to LASIK?

PRK surgery removes a thin layer of corneal tissue from the surface of the cornea with the excimer laser after the outermost layer (called the epithelium) has been removed. Unlike LASIK where the treatment is done beneath the flap, the removal of tissue on the surface of the cornea results in a longer healing time as well as mild discomfort for two to three days after the surgery.

Who Benefits Most From PRK?

For patients with lower amounts of nearsightedness and farsightedness, Photorefractive Keratectomy is a very predictable and extremely safe method for the correction of refractive errors. Despite the slight discomfort of PRK compared to LASIK, our surgeons may recommend PRK over LASIK based on results of your comprehensive eye examination. Our doctors will discuss the indications for having PRK and LASIK with you during your consultation.

What Is the Recovery Time?

The goal of any refractive vision correction procedure is to reduce your dependence on corrective lenses. For patients receiving Photorefractive Keratectomy, it may be several days before you feel comfortable returning to work and normal activity. Pain is usually quite minimal after surgery, although postoperative discomfort is a possibility.

4 Step PRK Procedure

Step 1

Step 1
Alongside numbing drops, an alcohol solution is placed on the eye to help soften the cornea.

Step 2

Step 2 PRK
The surgeon then smooths the surface of the cornea with a special surgical instrument.

Step 3

PRK step 3
An excimer laser is then used to precisely reshape the curvature of the cornea’s surface.

Step 4

PRK step 4
A bandage-like soft contact lens is then placed on the cornea to help protect the eye as it heals.

Are You Interested?

Call us at (615) 559-4242 to schedule your appointment to find out if PRK is right for you.

What people are saying about Loden Vision Centers

I had the PRK procedure done by Dr. Loden two months ago. My only regret is that I did not do it sooner! It was a great experience. Both he and his staff do an amazing job throughout the entire process.

– Stephanie Forrester
via Facebook

Date published: 05/17/2013
5 / 5 stars

Hampton B. Speech Bubble Photo

Many thanks to Doctor Loden and his amazing staff! They made something that would otherwise be very intimidating very comforting. Their professionalism and service was off the charts. I am one day post surgery and am pain free and can see better than I have for twenty years. I would recommend them to anyone!

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Hampton B.
Kim C. Speech Bubble Photo

I am so thankful to Dr. Loden. My results from my LASIK surgery were instant. I don't have hardly any vision distortion and it 1 day post surgery, it will just keep getting better each day. I see better now than I've ever been able to with glasses or contacts. I so recommend Dr. Loden!!!

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Kim C.
Darien200 Speech Bubble Photo

Provided by Citysearch - Thanks to Dr. Loden and his staff. I had LASIK yesterday with the guarantee that I would have 20/20 or better. Now it's the day after and sure enough I have 20/20 in both eyes and Dr. Loden says "it will only get better." Everything he has said has been spot on so there is no need to doubt him now. His staff was the nicest people I've ever met in a business environment. If anyone deserves a award it would be Loden Vision Center.

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