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Types of Laser Eye Surgery

LASIK healing.jpgEverybody’s heard of LASIK right?  But did you know there are actually different types of laser eye surgery?

LASIK (laser-assisted-in-situ-keratomileusis) is often referred to as laser vision correction or refractive surgery.  It uses a microkeratome metal blade to cut the cornea flap and an excimer laser to reshape the eye.  It is the most frequently performed elective surgery in America.  During LASIK, the surgeon creates a protective flap to access the inner corneal tissue.  The inner layers of your cornea receive pulses of cool laser light controlled by a computer.  You hear a clicking sound while this happens but don’t feel pain because of the numbing drops put in your eyes.  The laser gently reshapes the inner corneal layer to improve your vision.  Following this, the surgeon repositions and aligns the flap to its original position.  Some blurriness may be experienced following the procedure but will correct itself quickly.

PRK (Photorefractive Keratotomy) is a procedure for people with larger pupils, thin corneas, dry eyes or other corneal issues.  During PRK surgery, an eye surgeon uses a laser to reshape the cornea. This laser, which delivers a cool pulsing beam of ultraviolet light, is used on the surface of the cornea, not underneath a flap of the cornea

LASEK is a type of surgery often used for patients who aren’t suites for standard LASIK surgery, such as people with astigmatism.  Short for laser epithelial keratomileusis, this is a variant of PRK. An epithelial flap is created and then epithelial cells are loosened using an alcohol solution. A laser is used to reshape the cornea, then the flap is replaced and secured with a soft contact lens while it heals.

If you have questions about vision correction surgery, please consult the staff at Opthalmic Consultants of Boston in Boston. We can provide you with detailed information about the different types of eye surgeries. If you’re considering laser eye surgery, you want to make sure that the laser and procedure are 100 percent FDA-approved and that your surgeon is experienced and Board Certified.

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