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PRK vs LASIK

Comparison of Photo-Refractive Keratectomy (PRK) and Lasik

The below chart lays out differences between PRK and Lasik eye surgery. Both surgeries have their advantages and categories below show some of the main differences in the debate of PRK VS LASIK.

Issue

PRK

LASIK

Intra-operative painNoneNone
Post-operative painVariable (minimal to significant)Mild
Approved for:
Myopia
Hyperopia
Astigmatism
 
<= -12.00
<= +5.00
<= -4.00
            
<= -14.00
<= +5.00
<= -5.00
Perform on thin corneasYesNo
Perform on flat corneasYesNo
Perform on deep set eyesYesNo
Perform on “small eyes”YesNo
Do in epithelial dystrophyYesNo
Corneal healingStable tensile strengthReduced tensile strength
Risk with contact sportsNoYes
Intra-op pressure damageNoPossible
Retinal/optic nerve strokeNoPossible
Induced retinal tearsNoPossible
Post-op dry eyeOccasionalFrequent
Visual acuity recoverySlowerFaster
Long-term resultsMore predictableLess predictable
Re-op/enhancement rates1-5%Up to 25-30%
Follow-upUp to 20 years (1989)Most <10 yrs (approval 11/99)
Flap complicationsNone

Buttonholes

“Free cap”

Wrinkles

Interface scarring

Epithelial ingrowth

“Flap melts”

“Sands of Sahara” syndrome

Diffuse lamellar keratitis

Flap may dislodge with trauma