PRK Eye Surgery

PRK laser eye treatment reshapes the cornea to correct visual abnormalities, as also happens in LASIK surgery. The difference here is that no flap is made in the cornea. This treatments is less popular than LASIK, due to the significant discomfort post-operatively and the prolonged healing (4 hours for LASIK and 4-7 days for PRK).

PRK is chosen usually when the patient is not eligible for LASIK..

In PRK the surface cells (epithelium) are removed and the underlying surface is exposed. After the laser application, the surface skin has to heal and this takes 3 to 4 days.

It can be fairly uncomfortable during the first 3 days and the vision usually takes 3 to 5 days to be fairly clear. Patients often need several days off work.

PRK is usually chosen for anatomical reasons, typically a patient with thinner corneas where you want to avoid creating a LASIK flap. However, with the arrival of very predictable thin LASIK flaps, even some of these patients can now have the benefits of LASIK, e.g. no or little discomfort and very rapid clear vision, usually later the same day for LASIK.


Is PRK safe?

PRK has been around for 25 years and is a relatively simple procedure. In expert hands and at a specialist hospital, the risk of complications is very low. But of course, laser treatment is still surgery and you should approach having vision correction in the right manner.

Before and After Laser Surgery

Before your appointment we need you to please:

  • - Not wear your contact lenses at least 3 days before the appointment
  • - We will arrange a Pentacam and Oculyzer scan at the Cape Eye Hospital
  • - If you know your contact lens script, please bring it with you