Like LASIK, PRK (PhotoRefractive Keratectomy) uses an excimer laser to reshape the cornea. PRK differs to LASIK in that the laser is applied to the surface layers of the cornea rather than the underlying bed of the cornea.
The epithelium, a layer of cells covering the cornea, is gently removed and the laser is applied to the exposed tissue. A bandage contact lens is placed on the eye to help with comfort and the healing process for 3 to 4 days.
The effects of PRK are not instantaneous due to the ongoing healing process of the cornea. Improvement to eyesight is typically slower with PRK, however, PRK may be recommended instead of SMILE, FLEx or LASIK for people whose cornea is thinner or whose career limits their procedure choice.
As vision recovery is more gradual with PRK, Canberra Eye Laser recommends to allow two weeks recovery time for full visual function.