After the invention of contact lenses came the development of refractive eye surgery. The first refractive eye surgery approved was PRK in 1995, and the second was LASIK. Of the two, the latter is more popular today and most preferred by eye doctors. The more significant part of the journey for any refractive surgery usually happens with an eye doctor who co-manages with a surgeon to help you.
Refractive surgery is a procedure that an eye surgeon performs to correct refractive eye conditions like hyperopia or myopia. The surgery helps correct the refraction of light into the eye by adjusting the structure of some features in the eye.
A co-managing eye doctor will help you decide which surgical option is better for you and recommend a good surgeon. They will guide you on how to prepare before and with postsurgical care.
To have PRK, you must meet several requirements, like being over 18, having a stable prescription for the past year, and being in good eye health. Some other considerations include the following:
The surgery involves reshaping your cornea by removing the top layer and using a laser or brush to reshape the underlying layer.
Advantages of PRK
PRK effectively corrects myopia, with 90% of the patients receiving 20/20 vision without needing corrective eyewear. Over 95% of the patients get 20/40 eyesight without corrective eyewear.
The surgery is an excellent option for patients with thin or irregular corneas because it disrupts the cornea surface much less than LASIK. Additionally, the procedure is much simpler to perform than LASIK, making it a preferred choice for many eye doctors.
This laser surgery has been performed on over 10 million Americans since its approval in 1999. The surgeon usually creates a flap on the cornea and then uses an excimer laser to reshape the underlying epithelial layer. After correcting the corneal shape, the eye doctor returns the flap and leaves it to heal over the next few days.
Advantages of LASIK
Most LASIK patients have permanent vision correction and usually do not need corrective eyewear afterward. The procedure is quick and less painless than PRK, which can cause pain for a week while you heal. Additionally, your vision will have improved by the second day after the surgery, regardless of which refractive error you had.
Unlike PRK and LASIK that reshape the cornea, EVO ICL uses an implantable collamer lens built from a collagen copolymer. The implant is designed to fit perfectly between the eye's natural lens and the iris to correct vision. It improves the eye's ability to focus and is growing in popularity as an alternative to PRK and LASIK.
Advantages of EVO ICL
One of the main advantages of EVO ICL over LASIK and PRK is that, while it is designed to be permanent, EVO ICL can still be removed. It also works for severe refractive errors that other methods cannot correct. The procedure is fast and minimally invasive, and the recovery is much quicker because no tissues are removed.
For more information or to schedule an appointment for a comprehensive eye exam, contact Vision Care Optometry in Elk Grove, California at (916) 512-1600.