PRK (Photorefractive Keratectomy) is a laser vision correction technique similar to LASIK, except that a laser is used to carry out the entire laser eye surgery operation and no flap is necessary.
Instead of creating a flap, the surface cells of the cornea are ablated using the excimer laser resulting in a reshaped cornea.
PRK laser vison correction can be used to treat nearsightedness, mild to moderate farsightedness and astigmatism. It is generally performed when the cornea is too thin or slightly too irregular to perform LASIK.
FDA approved since 1995, photorefractive keratectomy reshapes the cornea by using the Visx S4 Excimer laser to ablate (remove by vaporization) a small amount of corneal tissue from the front of the eye. Computer-guided laser pulses reshape the cornea in a way that improves the refraction (bending) of light, which enhances total vision. The United States Air Force approved PRK for its fighter pilots as an alternative method of vision correction. PRK is a vision treatment option for patients who are not candidates for LASIK (the most common form of laser vision correction).