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What is the Difference between LASIK and LASEK?

There are many options when it comes to laser eye surgery in New Jersey and New York, including LASIK and LASEK. Both LASIK and LASEK surgery reshape the cornea which, in turn, fixes your vision. Both are generally thought to be equally effective for people with astigmatism, nearsightedness, farsightedness and presbyopia. Although they may sound alike and can essentially accomplish the same goal, these two procedures vary in important ways. 

LASIK (Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis)

LASIK surgery creates a flap in the cornea of the eye. From there, laser pulses are focused on the stroma (inner part of the cornea) to reshape it. The flap is then replaced and healing occurs over the course of a few days, with little to no pain in most cases. LASIK is ideal for candidates who have ample corneal tissue and no preexisting eye infections, injuries or autoimmune diseases. It is highly effective in producing 20/20 vision or better and presents much less discomfort than LASEK surgery in most cases. 

LASEK (Laser-Assisted SubEpithelial Keratectomy)

LASEK surgery reshapes the cornea without the creation of a flap. This procedure avoids the deeper cut of traditional LASIK. Instead, the epithelium (outer layer of the cornea) is loosened and folded back so that the surgeon can work on the exposed cornea. This means that LASEK is better for people who are poor LASIK candidates due to thin corneal tissue or other cornea problems. LASEK also avoids flap-related complications, lowers the risk of dry eye conditions after surgery, and modifies significantly less corneal tissue compared with LASIK. The recovery time, however, is longer with LASEK; a small price to pay for the increased safety of the procedure. 

Important Differences Between LASIK and LASEK 

LASEK surgery typically requires a longer recovery time when compared to LASIK surgery. Recovery can also be more painful after surgery. When performed on people with thin corneas, though, LASIK can produce less-than-ideal results, so LASEK is often a superior option. Only your surgeon can help you determine which laser vision correction procedure is best for you. The most important factor to consider is choosing the right surgeon who has performed thousands of both of these surgeries to make sure you get the best results. 

Schedule a Consultation

At the Cohen Eye Institute, we encourage those interested in LASIK and LASEK procedures to set up a consultation with our renowned surgeon, Dr. Ilan Cohen. Dr. Cohen will explain your options to you in a comprehensive and easy to understand way so that you can make an educated decision about your eye care. 

While some doctors will push either LASIK or LASEK surgery on you for financial gain, we allow you to make your own decision based on your needs alone. We will not try to sell you more expensive, unnecessary procedures and will only recommend the surgery that we feel is appropriate in your individual case. We also offer you other non-laser options if they may be more beneficial in your individual case.

If you’re interested in learning more about LASIK, LASEK, cataract surgery, or other laser vision correction options in NYC, Queens, the greater New York area, or Old Bridge and Middlesex County, New Jersey, click below to schedule a consultation with us today. We’re focused on improving your vision! We always welcome your calls at (212) 764-2020 or (866) 731-3937! 

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