My PRK Experience

I was born with absolutely atrocious eyesight. I always say that if I were born in the wild, there’s absolutely no way I would have survived.

If I were born in the wild, there’s absolutely no way I would have survived.

I got glasses when I was 9, and I went to contact lenses at 14. That was 15 years ago. After today, I hope to never have to wear contacts ever again.

I arrived at Laser Vision Centers of Cleveland at 8:15am with my wife. After finalizing my payment (thanks for the 20% discount, VSP!), I went through a couple final tests with the technician to make sure my eye topography hadn’t changed in a week. All good there!

From there, the optometrist on staff took me back to do a final check on my prescription strength. I’m glad they were thorough with ensuring everything would come out correctly. Prescription all set, now time to meet the surgeon.

After popping the first of my Valium, I talked with the surgeon about the procedure. He went into detail on what I would be going through. Nothing surprising, as I had already done some serious research into the procedure.

With the pre-op meetings all done, it was time to prep for the surgery. I channeled my inner lunch lady and wore a sweet hair net. First up was a round of numbing eye drops, which worked almost instantly. Next up was a round of antibiotic eye drops, followed by a sponge of lidocaine on the inside of both eye lids. This was to help the eye speculum from irritating my eye lids. After having my eye lids and eye lashes wiped with iodine, I was ready off to the surgery room.

As I was doing PRK and not LASIK, I only had one laser machine to sit under. I laid under the machine on the surgical bed.

My right eye was first. The eye speculum held my eye lids open. The surgeon wiped my eye with an alcohol solution to loosen the epithelial layer, then wiped off the loosed cells. I was told to watch the green light. 18 seconds later, a slight smell of burning hair, and it was over. A quick antibiotic wash followed by seemingly 400 gallons of cold water wash, and I could see! The doctor put a non-prescription contact lens on my eye as a bandage of sorts, and my right eye was done.

18 seconds, a slight smell of burning hair, and it was over.

The procedure was repeated on my left eye. It took 19 seconds for my left eye due to differences in prescription.

I can’t explain how much this changes everything. I could see immediately. Not just shapes and colors, but I could really SEE.

I could see immediately.

Now, with PRK, I am not able to see 20/20 immediately. In fact, I am seeing a little blurry as I type this. It will actually get more hazy before it begins to clear. This is due to the epithelial layer of cells that was scraped off during the process coming back to heal. In about 5 days, my eyes will be about done healing.

Words cannot accurately describe how impressed I am by both the technology of modern medicine and its convenience. This is a life changing procedure, and I was done by 9:30am. 1.5 hours for sight. Absolutely unbelievable.