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LASIK vs LASEK Eye Surgery Compared

Laser eye surgeryLASIK vs LASEK Eye Surgery Compared: Which is right for you?

LASIK and LASEK are both common laser-assisted corrective eye surgeries. Both can be used to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. But what’s the difference?

LASIK Explained

LASIK (Laser-Assisted In-Sutu Keratomileusis) is a vision correction treatment that uses a laser to reshape the surface of the eye’s cornea. The cornea is the transparent part of the coat of the eyeball that covers the iris and pupil. A very thin flap of the cornea is peeled back, then a laser is used to shape the remainder of the cornea beneath it. The flap is placed back over the “shaped” portion, and the surgery is complete.The benefit of LASIK is that because the shaped part of the cornea lies beneath the eye’s cornea flap, the cornea heals very quickly. In most cases, a person will recover from LASIK surgery within 24 hours, and begin driving, using a computer or reading within 1 day.

LASEK Explained

LASEK (laser epithelial keratomileusis) is an alternative to LASIK. Instead of creating a corneal flap, a gentle solution is used to loosen the top layer of the cornea (epithelium) and this layer is gently removed. A laser is used to reshape the cornea to correct the vision, as done in LASIK and PRK. The epithelial flap is replaced, and a bandage contact lens is placed on the eye.Similar to PRK, for the first couple days after LASEK eye surgery, there is slightly more discomfort and blurriness than with LASIK. However, normal work activities can usually be resumed within a week. The protective contact lens used to aid in the healing of the cornea is generally left on the eye for up to a week. Dr. Rohr will painlessly remove this bandage lens in the office. Eye drops are generally used for approximately one month, compared to one week with LASIK.

Which is Better?

The biggest benefit of LASEK is that patients who are not good candidates for LASIK because of thin corneas or large pupils are usually good candidates for LASEK. In addition, LASEK patients report lower incidents of dry eyes and a shorter healing time than PRK eye surgery.Because the cornea is not weakened, LASEK may also be recommended for athletes, soldiers or other patients at a high risk for trauma or injury to the eye.Both LASIC and LASEK have produced successful results for millions of adults. However, it takes an experienced eye surgeon like Dr. Rohr at the Rohr Eye & Laser Center in Grand Blanc, Michigan to determine which is best for you.Want to know more? Sign up for a free consultation today.