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The Difference Between LASIK & PRK

Category: LASIK



Chances are, you’ve heard of someone getting ‘LASIK’. It’s also quite possible that you’ve met someone that’s had PRK, too. Did you know, the visual results are expected to be the same with PRK and LASIK? 

Think of needing to get to Seaworld. You can either take 410 or 1604 to get there, but it doesn’t make the other route wrong. While the visual results of LASIK and PRK are expected to be the same, the way in which the laser vision correction achieved is different.  


Let’s dig in.  


What is LASIK Eye Surgery?

LASIK vision correction, Laser-Assisted in Situ Keratomileusis, is a common vision correction procedure that’s offered to patients with astigmatism, myopia and presbyopia. LASIK is done by reshaping the front surface of the eye (the cornea) to help light enter the eye and focus on the back of the retina, which helps give you your best natural vision. Similar to a camera lens, how amazing is that? LASIK surgery patients often ask, “Why didn’t I do this sooner?”. LASIK is a quick and painless procedure that is done in office. It only takes about 8-10 minutes! 


What is PRK?

PRK vision surgery, Photorefractive Keratectomy, is a specific laser eye surgery. PRK was approved by the FDA in 1995. Although it is FDA approved like LASIK, the technology for PRK is actually older. PRK was actually the first laser vision surgery approved by the FDA. The results of LASIK and PRK have helped many patients correct their vision so that they are able to see their best clear and crisp vision without the need for eye glasses and contacts.  The PRK eye procedure is done in office and generally takes a little longer than 10 minutes. PRK is a popular surgery among law enforcement and military officers.


Laser Eye Surgeries: Which is better, PRK vs LASIK?

Many patients look at LASIK and PRK as the same vision surgery. While both procedures have the same type of outcome, the ways in which they are achieved are different. This brings the question asked by many patients, “Which is better, PRK vs LASIK?”. During our consultation, we review a patient’s unique anatomy of their eyes and what they’re looking to achieve after the procedure, in addition to setting clear expectations about recovery. While the recovery with PRK may take longer, many patients who opt to have PRK are based on a few different factors: 

When researching PRK recovery and results of LASIK laser vision surgery, it is important that patients also keep in mind their ‘why’. Remember why you wanted to ditch your glasses and enjoy life without any barriers. If you’re looking to have a quicker recovery, many patients elect to have LASIK, SMILE, or even ICL Eye Surgery instead. Our office has state of the art, cutting edge technology that allows our team to perform scans of the front part of your eye (cornea). This allows our eye surgeons the opportunity to view the best possible LASIK procedure for your unique eyes and goals. 


Which lasts longer, LASIK vs PRK?

Great news, both laser eye surgeries are designed to be permanent. Despite the differences of ways to achieve your new crisp and clear vision of LASIK eye procedures and PRK surgery, the results are aimed to be the same. 


Is PRK less risky than LASIK?

While every procedure has virtually some risk, did you know that the risk of dangerous infections is actually greater while wearing contact lenses? According to the CDC, those that wear contact lenses are at a greater risk of developing different types of microbial keratitis. Laser eye surgery patients often mention how much happier they are after LASIK, enjoying the vision away from their eye glasses. Laser eye procedures at Parkhurst NuVision are completed after a thorough Advanced Ocular Analysis and meeting with our highly trained LASIK and PRK doctors. We set aside time at each appointment to discuss questions for your vision surgery and recovery, whether you choose PRK, LASIK, or another laser procedure. 


Is PRK or LASIK more expensive?

The laser eye surgery costs of both PRK and LASIK are the same. This allows our team to complete a full dilated Advanced Ocular Analysis to help determine which laser eye surgery would best suit your visual needs. Whether it be LASIK, PRK, or any of the other great laser procedures we offer, our team is there with you each step of the way!


If you have questions about PRK or LASIK eye vision surgery, call our office at (210) 940-3984 or contact us here! Our team will work with you to decide which laser eye surgery will best benefit you and your vision long term! 

Be sure to talk to one of our doctors about not only the benefits of LASIK, but also any risks of LASIK that may pertain to your individual needs and circumstances.

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