An Overview On What Is PRK

By: Jacksoneye
August 31st, 2015

JacksonEyeHave you heard some friends talk about PRK eye surgery? If you aren’t aware “What is PRK?” In general, then you are absolutely on the right page to get some valuable information. PRK referred to photorefractive keratectomy is another kind of corrective eye surgery that uses an excimer laser to remove corneal tissue. This kind of surgery was first introduced in the 1980s and from then on was used to correct mild to moderate cases of refractive problems like nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism.

Who are the ideal candidates that can benefit from PRK surgery?

  • Individuals who are 18 years old or above and have used prescription eyeglasses for at least one year.
  • Eye patients who have minimum to moderate hyperopia, myopia or astigmatism.
  • People who are born with thin corneas.
  • Patients who are professional boxers, wrestlers, martial arts fanatics.

What to expect on the PRK treatment?

During the surgery

Since, PRK surgery treatment is also considered an outpatient procedure where the eye surgeon puts an anesthetic drop into the patient’s eye or eyes. Here the surgeon takes away the layer of epithelial cells covering the cornea and uses a laser to reshape the tissue. To determine accurately the amount of laser needed from the patient’s eye measurement and prescription, a computer program is used. During the whole laser surgery, the laser has an XYZ dynamic eye tracker to be sure the laser pulses are placed in the appropriate position even with involuntary movements of the eye. A microscope is also used by the surgeon while performing the whole procedure, which is attached to the excimer laser already.

After the surgery

The PRK surgery would only take a few minutes and the patient can have both eyes treated in one session only. After the laser surgery, a bandage or therapeutic contact lens is put on the affected eye and required to be worn for a few days (you sleep with the lens and never have to self-remove it). The surgeon will remove the lens after 3-5 days depending on the individual healing process. Antibiotic eye drops and other anti-inflammatory drops are also prescribed to the patient for faster healing and prevent any infections. Patient is also advised to go for additional post-op check-ups for a few days after the surgery and he/she can expect to resume on usual duties 3-5 days approximately after Prk surgery.

Potential Complications PRK surgery

Under normal circumstances, mild discomfort and sensitivity to light can be felt and could last for 48-72 hours after the laser treatment. During the first 6 months, below are the potential side effects:

  • Mild glare effect.
  • Mild halos or hazy view around objects can be experienced.


Most PRK eye surgeries are proven to be safer and provide positive results, although there are some expected side effects that can be associated during the entire laser procedure. To minimize any risk, entrust this delicate procedure only through the expert hands of a licensed eye care specialist. Remember, this type of eye surgery may require longer healing process because the corneal epithelium need more time to grow back, so expect a few months before one’s vision is improved.