Photorefractive Keratectomy - PRK
PRK is a procedure that uses a sophisticated, computer-controlled excimer laser which has been specifically programmed for each patient's individual needs, to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. The laser produces an ultraviolet beam of light that is emitted in pulses. Each pulse delicately removes the microscopic layers of tissue from the cornea (1 /200th of a human hair at a time). The excimer laser is unique in that it emits a"cold" or non-thermal light beam. This makes it ideal for corneal surgery because it eliminates the possibility of thermal damage to surrounding tissue. PRK is the procedure of choice for patients with mild to moderate amounts of myopia and hyperopia. The majority of PRK patients have attained visions of 20/40 or better. In excess of one million people in 40 countries around the world have had PRK. Dr. Rothchild has been involved with the excimer laser for more than 10 years.
Astigmatism occurs when the cornea's shape is like a football, more curved in one direction than the other. Light entering the cornea focuses in more than one point within the eye, resulting in blurry and distorted vision. To treat astigmatism, the cornea must be made spherical, like a basketball. This is done by making two incisions in the steepest part of the cornea, causing it to relax and become more round. Astigmatic Keratotomy is often performed in conjunction with other refractive procedures.