In recent years, more people have selected surgical vision correction methods for nearsightedness and farsightedness. Some people mistakenly believe that all vision surgeries are one and the same because of number of similar sounding acronyms such as LASEK and LASIK. While the basic concept behind elective vision correction surgery is to reshape the cornea with the aim of enhancing vision, there are several key differences between LASEK and LASIK.
Laser Epithelial Keratomileusis, shortened to LASEK, is a newer technology that combines portions of older vision correction techniques such as Laser-Assisted in Situ Keratomileusis (LASIK) and Photorefractive Keratectomy (PRK.) The recovery time from LASEK is significantly shorter than the recovery time from LASIK or PRK.
While most people who get LASEK are thrilled with their results, there is always a risk of complications. Severe dry eyes that require frequent use of prescription eye drops is a possibility. Most people feel as if they have a foreign object lodged in their eye right after having LASEK, but this usually resolves itself within a few days.
There are no recorded cases of blindness caused by LASEK, which is not the case with LASIK or PRK. LASEK does not involve any cutting to reshape the cornea which could be why the incidence of blindness is virtually non-existent. However, some patients experience problems seeing in low lighting conditions after having LASEK surgery. While this rare complication usually resolves itself within a year, theoretically it could become a permanent issue. Before getting any type of vision correction surgery, consider whether you could really deal with being one of the five percent of patients who are extremely dissatisfied with the results of their procedures.