Refractive Surgery

LASIK (Laser in Situ Keratomileusis)

LASIK combines two techniques of surgery to correct refractive error. Firstly, a femtosecond laser or surgical blade called microkeratome creates a thin flap in the cornea.

Secondly, an excimer laser sculpts the underlying cornea into a new shape to correct the refractive error.

The flap is then repositioned and adheres on its own without sutures after only a few minutes. Eyedrops are placed in the eye to facilitate the healing process. Vision recovery is typically rapid, and there is little or no post-operative pain.

Photorefractive Keratectomies (PRK - LASEK - EPILASIK)

PRK reduces low to high myopia, low to moderate hyperopia, and astigmatism. In PRK, the epithelium, the layer of cells covering the cornea, is removed and the excimer laser sculpts the cornea to correct refractive error. A bandage contact lens is usually placed on the eye following the procedure to speed the epithelial healing process, which usually takes three to four days. Because PRK sculpts the outer surface of the cornea, some patients experience some discomfort after surgery and epithelial recovery time lasts for a period of several (3 - 5) days. PRK has been largely displaced by LASIK because LASIK provides less discomfort, faster vision recovery, and the ability to enhance or refine the outcome easily in as little as three months following the initial surgery. However, PRK and related methods (LASEK - EPILASIK) seem to come back and regain its place in daily practice. Sometimes they are recommended instead of LASIK because they do not require a flap in the cornea and may be a better option for people who have thin corneas.

Intraocular Refractive Lens- IRL

Until recently, refractive surgery for some people with high degrees of myopia or hyperopia had not been an option. The amount of correction needed could not be achieved safely through surgical procedures involving reshaping the cornea. Intraocular Refractive Lenses (IRL) can be used to treat patients who need correction for refractive errors that exceeds the safe range of excimer laser procedures such as LASIK. In order to preserve the focusing ability needed for reading vision, the eye lens is not removed from the eye. The phakic IRL, sometimes referred to as an implantable contact lens or ICL, is surgically implanted inside the eye in front of the eye's natural lens.
Phakic IRLs are being used around the world with multiple intraocular lens styles. Since phakic IRLs involve entering the eye, unlike LASIK and PRK, the risk of complications is higher.