Photorefractive Keratectomy, or PRK, is a specific type of laser vision correction. It is also referred to surface ablation. In other words, it does not involve creating a corneal flap. Instead, only the thin surface layer of the cornea, the epithelium, is removed to expose the underlying tissue. The epithelium is usually removed by loosening its adhesions with a dilute alcohol solution, then gently brushing it away. The underlying corneal tissue can then be sculpted with the excimer laser. The epithelium grows back and heals on its own over a few days. This can be an excellent alternative to patients who have thin corneas and other contraindications for LASIK.
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