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  • Procedure Time
    10 minutes
  • Anaesthesia
  • Overnight stay
    Not needed
  • Recovery Time
    3-4 weeks

What is PRK Eye Surgery?

PRK (Photorefractive Keratectomy) is a treatment method that corrects refractive errors like Lasik. Unlike the lasik technique, which is still the most widely used technique, in the PRK method, a thin layer (flap) is not created with an incision in the cornea, the laser starts directly from the outer surface. PRK operation is the process of stripping the thin living tissue called epithelium at the top of the cornea and applying Excimer Laser to the underlying tissue. At the end of the operation, transparent and unnumbered contact lenses are placed on the eye for a few days to protect the corneal surface. The process of having a good vision is longer than Lasik and may take up to 3-4 weeks. After the operation, it is painful and uncomfortable for about 2-4 days, the reason is that the healing of the epithelial tissue is completed in this period.


The results of PRK surgery are similar to LASIK results, but recovery is slower in the first PRK because it takes several days for new epithelial cells to regenerate and coat the eye surface.

Also, the risk of eye infection and blurred vision is slightly higher in the first few days following PRK surgery.

LASIK patients usually experience less loss of comfort and their vision stabilizes more quickly, while with PRK, the eye's healing is gradual and may take several weeks to achieve the final result.

However, PRK offers some distinct benefits.

Since no LASIK-style corneal flap (containing both epithelial and deep stromal tissues) is created during PRK, there is greater therapeutic corneal thickness. This is helpful if your corneas are too thin for LASIK.

In addition, there is no risk of flap complications and the risk of removing too much cornea with the excimer laser is reduced.

How does PRK work?

The PRK procedure has three steps:

A central area of the corneal epithelium is removed with an alcohol solution, a "polishing" device, or a blunt surgical instrument.

An excimer laser is used to precisely reshape the curvature of the cornea. This computer-controlled, highly specialized laser delivers pulses of cold ultraviolet light that very precisely lift microscopic amounts of tissue.

A soft contact lens is placed on the cornea to protect the eye as new epithelial cells grow on the corneal surface. This process takes about four or five days, after which the contact lens is removed by your eye doctor.

I decided to have an operation so what’s next?

First of all, you should choose an eye surgeon who is experienced in the field of PRK surgery. You will then undergo a comprehensive eye exam to make sure you are eligible for laser eye surgery. In this examination, the following will be evaluated:

The size of your pupils.

Moisture of your eyes to assess the risk of developing dry eye after laser eye surgery and to treat it appropriately.

Corneal curvature using a corneal mapping device to precisely measure the outline of the front surface of your eye.

The thickness of your corneas.

Your ophthalmologist will evaluate your general health and medical history and any medications you take to determine if you are a suitable candidate for PRK.

If you wear contact lenses, you may need to stop wearing them for a while before your eye exam, as contact lenses can change the natural shape of your cornea.

Long-term PRK results

The results of PRK and LASIK are very similar. Most people achieve 20/20 vision and nearly all patients achieve 20/40 or better visual acuity after PRK surgery.

If photosensitivity is an issue after PRK, glasses with photochromic lenses can often provide relief. Also, if you have a minor post-operative refractive error, low prescription lenses with a non-reflective coating can sharpen your eyesight for activities such as driving, often at night.

Complications of PRK and LASIK are rare and can include infection and glare (such as starbursts or halos that are most noticeable when looking at lights at night, such as while driving).

Although unlikely, you may need additional or ameliorative surgery to further improve your vision or correct a gradual worsening of your vision over time.

When you reach your 40s after PRK surgery, you may need to use reading glasses due to age-related near vision loss called presbyopia.

Features of PRK Method

· Although the eye degree is small (in myopia and astigmatism up to 3 degrees), it is recommended in some eye structures whose corneal thickness is not suitable for Lasik.

· The eye is anesthetized with only drops, as in the Lasik method.

· The patient does not feel pain during the operation.

· Contact lenses are inserted in order for the epithelium to recover and to protect the eye, and it is removed under the control of a doctor 3-4 days after the operation.