Dos and Don'ts After PRK Laser Surgery

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Key Takeaways

PRK stands for Photo-Refractive Keratectomy.  It is another alternative type of refractive laser vision correction to correct refractive errors. PRK is a fast, outpatient procedure.  Generally speaking, PRK is a great option when patients have thin or irregular corneas.  PRK is also the surgery of choice for patients who play contact sports to avoid displacing the corneal flap created during LASIK.  PRK is also favorable for combat and special operations in the military.

What Is the PRK Surgery Healing Process Like?

In order to have PRK surgery, a patient must have stable vision over the course of a year or more.  During PRK, the outer epithelial layer is removed and reshaped with an excimer laser beam to achieve the desired prescription.  PRK has a slightly longer healing time so a soft contact lens acts like a "bandage" to protect the cornea as it heals over 3-4 days until your next follow-up appointment when the contact lens is removed by the eye specialist.

To allow for a smooth healing period before and after PRK surgery, we recommend the following guidelines:

Things You Should Do After PRK Laser Eye Surgery

1. Follow any recommended prescription drops prior to the surgery date.

2. Dress comfortably the day of the procedure with easy shirts to remove that won't tug on the face or head when removing.

3. Shower prior to surgery and avoid shampoo from entering after surgery.

4. Remove any and all eye makeup the day of surgery.

5. Remove lash extensions to avoid loose fibers entering the sterile surgery field.

6. Eat prior and prep any food to eat later since vision will be blurry following surgery.

7. Plan to have a designated driver to take you home.

8. Go home and sleep to keep eyes lubricated.

9. Keep cold compresses in the fridge to apply over the eyes to soothe discomfort.

10. Avoid monitor screens and bright lights for a couple of days.

11. Keep acetaminophen available for pain relief.

Things You Shouldn't Do After PRK Laser Eye Surgery

1. Stop prescribed eye drops following surgery until recommended duration has elapsed.

2. Play with animals or sleep with them following surgery.  Enlist a friend or family to care for your pet a few days to a week following surgery.

3. Exert strenuous physical activity for at least a week.  

4. Play contact sports for at least a month.

5. Swim with or without goggles for 1 month following surgery.

6. Smoke until eyes are sufficiently healed, up to several weeks.

7. Apply eye make up or creams near the eye for at least 7 days after surgery.

For PRK Eye Surgery in San Antonio, Trust San Antonio Eye Specialists

At San Antonio Eye Specialists, we have one of the most renown ophthalmologists in the country working in-house, Dr. Iskander. Dr. Iskander has helped countless individuals overcome refractive vision errors through laser surgeries, including PRK surgery in San Antonio. To learn more or to schedule a consultation, contact us today online or over the phone. For your eyes... don't compromise!

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