While LASIK is a highly effective option for most people, it is not the best option for everyone. But this does not mean all hope is lost!  While you may not be a good candidate for LASIK, there are alternative and equivalent vision correction solutions we offer here at ClearSight that may still free you from glasses and contacts.  One of those procedures is Photorefractive Keratectomy, or PRK.  Also known as Advanced Surface Ablation (ASA), PRK is a LASIK alternative that is effective in patients with thinner corneas, minor corneal irregularities, or for patients with specific occupations/hobbies such as contact sports.  It has been shown to provide equivalent vision to LASIK in studies.

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What Is PRK?

PRK is a bladeless refractive procedure that does not use any sharp instruments, and only differs from LASIK in one significant way – instead of creating the corneal flap typical of traditional LASIK, this procedure begins with the gentle removal of the epithelial tissue (the tissue covering the cornea) using a “soft brush”.

Afterwards, your vision is corrected in the same manner as with LASIK.  Using the same excimer lasers, the outer surface of the eye is reshaped to correct your nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. After the laser has fully reshaped the eye, a special contact lens is placed to protect the cornea while the epithelium heals underneath.

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Recovery Time

While the procedure itself is virtually painless, the recovery time is longer than with LASIK. The immediate recovery period after PRK is typically 48-72 hours after surgery, in which time patients sometimes report itchiness and discomfort. This happens while your body’s natural stem cells heal over the laser-treated area. As healing further progresses, patients’ vision will continue to improve for up to 30 days or more post-surgery.

PRK Advantages

Patients undergoing PRK achieve results as good as or better than with LASIK.  Other benefits of PRK are as follows:

  • Safe, gentle procedure
  • Minimal removal of your body’s natural tissue
  • A strong cornea during and after the healing process
  • Excellent vision
  • Safety for combat sports, the military, and MMA
  • Increased rate of candidacy for those with thin corneas

See how PRK improved Joe’s vision:

Lena couldn’t be happier with PRK:

Am I A Good Candidate?

A good candidate for PRK or ASA is typically someone in their 20s or 30s who are seeking a safe and effective alternative to glasses or contacts. The same FDA approved lasers that are used in LASIK are used in PRK.  It is true that PRK is not recommended as often as LASIK.  This is simply because because the recovery time is longer.

The only way to know your best treatment option is after a thorough medical eye exam. The good news? ClearSight has developed one of the most technologically advanced diagnostic exams in the country, for an easy and accurate experience. Even better? They’re FREE for all new patients. Schedule yours today to find out if PRK, or another treatment alternative, is your best option to achieve Sight Without Glasses!