Lasik vs PRK question....

If you are thinking about having Lasik, IntraLasik, PRK, LASEK, Epi-Lasik, RLE, or P-IOL eye surgery, this is the forum to research your concerns or ask your questions.

Lasik vs PRK question....

Postby houstonman » Wed Jul 18, 2007 5:13 pm

I know everything there is to know about Lasik backwards and forwards. Lets be honest here lasik seems to be the "popular kid" in school. I dont really ever hear anyone say they had PRK done.... However the more I look into it the more safer it seems to be. I mean there is no flap that is created and I hear it takes about 2 weeks to heal.... however with Lasik a flap is created and lets say a year or 2 down the line im playing catch with my son and the ball somehow hits me in the eye .... the flap can very well be dislodged right? Its just a really scary thing to think about.... or if I took a high dive and one of them just came off?

Anyway where im getting at is it sounds like PRK is just the better way to go.... during the surgical process it really doesn't sound any more uncomfortable than lasik.... in fact since no flap is created isnt there less discomfort?


my last and final question to lasik expert and others is .... out of 50,000 surgeries would PRK or Lasik have more successful out comes in lets say 1-2 months. Thanks.
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Re: Lasik vs PRK question....

Postby JPD » Wed Jul 18, 2007 7:33 pm

houstonman wrote:I mean there is no flap that is created and I hear it takes about 2 weeks to heal....


The 2 weeks is for "functional" vision to return. You won't have good vision for more like 3 months.

houstonman wrote:however with Lasik a flap is created and lets say a year or 2 down the line im playing catch with my son and the ball somehow hits me in the eye .... the flap can very well be dislodged right?


Could happen, but realize that after two years the flap is sealed down extremely well. The degree of trauma that it would take to dislodge the flap would cause eye damage anyway. So, if you did get hit in the eye with a baseball hard enough to dislodge your flap, even if you had had PRK you will still suffer eye damage. That goes to show how well the flap is sealed down after one or two years. There is a lot anti-Lasik information on the internet which would have you belive that the flap is barely hanging on for dear life, and the slightest touch of the eye will make it fall out. It's not true. It will take some serious eye trauma to dislodge a well healed flap. Remember, these things have been around for 50 years.

houstonman wrote:Anyway where im getting at is it sounds like PRK is just the better way to go.... during the surgical process it really doesn't sound any more uncomfortable than lasik.... in fact since no flap is created isnt there less discomfort?


I agree with that. I only wish I had known it before I had Lasik. But neither procedure has a 100% success rate, and Lasik is still a viable option. But I do agree, when compare risk vs. reward between the two procedures, PRK wins.


houstonman wrote:my last and final question to lasik expert and others is .... out of 50,000 surgeries would PRK or Lasik have more successful out comes in lets say 1-2 months. Thanks.


Studies have shown virtually identical results, with a slight edge going to PRK.
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Re: Lasik vs PRK question....

Postby houstonman » Wed Jul 18, 2007 9:09 pm

JPD wrote:
houstonman wrote:I mean there is no flap that is created and I hear it takes about 2 weeks to heal....


The 2 weeks is for "functional" vision to return. You won't have good vision for more like 3 months.

houstonman wrote:however with Lasik a flap is created and lets say a year or 2 down the line im playing catch with my son and the ball somehow hits me in the eye .... the flap can very well be dislodged right?


Could happen, but realize that after two years the flap is sealed down extremely well. The degree of trauma that it would take to dislodge the flap would cause eye damage anyway. So, if you did get hit in the eye with a baseball hard enough to dislodge your flap, even if you had had PRK you will still suffer eye damage. That goes to show how well the flap is sealed down after one or two years. There is a lot anti-Lasik information on the internet which would have you belive that the flap is barely hanging on for dear life, and the slightest touch of the eye will make it fall out. It's not true. It will take some serious eye trauma to dislodge a well healed flap. Remember, these things have been around for 50 years.

houstonman wrote:Anyway where im getting at is it sounds like PRK is just the better way to go.... during the surgical process it really doesn't sound any more uncomfortable than lasik.... in fact since no flap is created isnt there less discomfort?


I agree with that. I only wish I had known it before I had Lasik. But neither procedure has a 100% success rate, and Lasik is still a viable option. But I do agree, when compare risk vs. reward between the two procedures, PRK wins.


houstonman wrote:my last and final question to lasik expert and others is .... out of 50,000 surgeries would PRK or Lasik have more successful out comes in lets say 1-2 months. Thanks.


Studies have shown virtually identical results, with a slight edge going to PRK.


thanks for all the input on this thread. Im sort of confused as to what you mean by you get your functional vison to return.... are you saying you cant see for 2 weeks? I hear its hazy but nothing to the point of not being able to see. Also when would you say you could see 20/20 or better with prk, 3 months? Any idea how long the surgical procedure takes vs lasik?
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Re: Lasik vs PRK question....

Postby JPD » Wed Jul 18, 2007 10:58 pm

houstonman wrote:thanks for all the input on this thread. Im sort of confused as to what you mean by you get your functional vison to return.... are you saying you cant see for 2 weeks?


Normally with PRK you'll have one eye done at a time. If you to do both eyes at once, then basically yes, you really wouldn't be able see. You wouldn't be BLIND, but you're eyes are dry, scabbed over, very light sensitive, and you certainly couldn't do things such as driving. Since you'll have only one eye done at a time, you'll be relying on your one good eye while the other heals. The reason they only do one eye at a time is because if you did them both, then you will be functionally blind. I know a guy who had PRK done on both eyes at once(done while in the miltary), and he was basically blind for about 7-10 days and never left his house the whole time. He closed all the blinds and sat in a dark room literally for a week, and didn't go back to work for 10 days. This is why only one eye is done at a time. I think the outcome is slightly better with procedures like Lasek or Epi-Lasik, but they will still only do one eye at a time, and the vision you'll have in that one eye won't be good enough to drive for a week or two.


houstonman wrote:Also when would you say you could see 20/20 or better with prk, 3 months? Any idea how long the surgical procedure takes vs lasik?


I can't really answer that, but I know it depends on the person, and it definately shouldn't take 3 months. I would think in 2-4 weeks you could see 20/20, but seeing 20/20 doesn't always equal good vision. Once you have laser vision correction, you'll understand what I mean by that. I had lasik, and my vision has been 20/15 since day one. However, with 20/15 vison on the eye chart, I still couldn't see very well for several months. I know it sounds funny, 20/15 should mean excellent vision, but you really have to experience what I'm talking about before you can understand. And in the initial stages it's even more dramatic with a surface ablation like PRK. The initial stage of PRK is pretty rough, this is the reason Lasik is so popular, and why so many doctors prefer the Lasik procedure. However, in the long run, PRK is more than likely a superior procedure.
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Postby lvziggy » Thu Jul 19, 2007 4:56 pm

H-

"I dont really ever hear anyone say they had PRK done". If that's the case you haven't read enough of the posts in this forum. I had PRK done in March and have posted here several times about my experience. Others have too. I suggest you go back through the older threads and you'll get a lot more info about PRK. For me, it was not bad at all, pain wise and seeing wise. Others have had more problems with PRK, but I think overall the people who get PRK (at least those who post on this forum) seem to have fewer problems with things like dry eye and night vision issues like halos and starbursts.

Also, make sure you're going to the very best doctor you can, and that doesn't necessarily mean the doctor who has done the most procedures. The doctor is really the one who will determine your outcome.

~Alison
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Postby Parli » Wed Jul 25, 2007 4:18 am

JPD

First let me say that I just found this sight today and it is great! I had my consult yesterday and asked the doctor about having the procedure done on different days for each eye and he said logistically it is best to have them done at the same time. The main reason he mentioned is that since you can't wear your contacts in the other eye you will have difficulty seeing until you have the next operation. He had a good point. The only solution I can see is to just remove the lens of my glasses over the operated eye. May look funny but it would work! What do other people do or what do you recommend?

Thanks!
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Postby LasikExpert » Wed Jul 25, 2007 7:25 am

A problem with having PRK on both eyes is if something delays the healing process. While uneventful PRK will give you "functional fuzzy" vision after a couple of days, a delay of healing in both eyes would be much worse than a delay in one eye.

Yes, you would be lopsided for a while, but it is a method to consider.
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Postby lvziggy » Wed Jul 25, 2007 4:31 pm

I had PRK done on each eye separately, 2 weeks apart. When I had the first eye done my surgeon put an extended wear contact in the other eye that hadn't been done yet. I was fine until 3 days before I was scheduled for the second eye because the contact had to come out and be out for 3 days before the procedure. Those 3 days were pretty rough with my eyes being so completely different. I tried taking the lens out of my glasses on the eye that had been done, but I still couldn't see. I used a patch when I was driving so that I only looked out of one lens, but other than that I just managed with my weird vision. At least it was only 3 days.

If I had had both eyes done at the same time I wouldn't have been able to do anything except bump around the house for at least a week if not longer, so I'm glad I had them done one at a time.

~Alison
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