3 alternatives to LASIK surgery

Man smiling working using computer laptopWhile LASIK surgery is the most popular surgery for vision correction, some people may not be candidates for that surgery or want to explore other options. Here are three alternatives to LASIK surgery as you consider your options to improve your vision.

Photorefractive Keratectomy (PRK)

Photorefractive Keratectomy, or PRK, is a successful option for refractive surgery. It works by using an eximer laser to reshape the cornea. The eximer laser uses a cool ultraviolet wavelength that vaportizes the surface cornea to the necessary shape. For patients who aren’t candidates for LASIK because their corneas are too thin, then PRK may be an ideal option.

Patients will experience minimal discomfort during the PRK procedure, which is similar to what they would have experienced with LASIK. A soft bandage contact lens will be placed on their eyes after PRK to provide comfort.

After the procedure, there is more discomfort for up to a week as the epithelium re-grows over the cornea. The soft bandage contact will be removed at this time. You can expect blurry vision during this healing time.


EPI-LASIK is another form of surface laser. This technique utilizes a plastic epithelial separator to remove the central epithelium in a continuous sheet. This technique differs from the PRK in that it allows the epithelium to heal faster and with less discomfort. The same eximer laser used in LASIK and PRK is used to shape the cornea. A bandage lens will be used to aid in healing, similar to PRK.

Phakic IOLs

Many patients are not a candidate for LASIK, PRK or EPI-LASIK, but may be a candidate for phakic intraocular lens, or IOL. If you have nearsightedness with thin corneas, this procedure is for you. The Verisyse phakic IOL is placed on top of the iris. the Visian Implantable Collamer Lens or ICL is placed behind the iris in front of the natural lens.

If you are interested in vision correction surgery but not sure if LASIK or another option would be better for you, please call 425-259-2020 and schedule a consultation.

Posted in: LASIK

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