PTK, or Phototherapeutic Keratectomy, is a surgical procedure that uses an excimer laser to treat corneal scarring and other conditions affecting the corneal surface, including corneal dystrophy and epithelial erosion syndrome. This procedure aims to reduce areas of cloudiness or roughness along with your cornea and correct the way light rays are directed along the retina.
Corneal treatments in the past used to require either scraping away unwanted roughness with a surgical blade or transplanting the entire cornea. But that’s no longer the case! PTK provides patients with a less intrusive, safer option to get the desired results.
This guide offers you everything you need to know about PTK surgery, its use, the recovery process, and why it’s different from PRK.
What To Expect During PTK Surgery?
Your doctor will first begin by using anesthetic drops to numb your eyes and avoid any discomfort during the process. Next, the surgeon will remove the epithelium, the cornea’s protective coating, while a laser reshapes the cornea to your requirements specified before treatment.
Immediately following the procedure, a contact lens bandage is placed on the patient’s eye to facilitate healing and minimize pain. Your doctor will also give you a course of antibiotics, steroids, and moisturizing eye drops to alleviate any irritation.
It’s important to know that this surgery aims to cure the corneal disease at the surface level, Not to eliminate the need for glasses or contact lenses! The following are some conditions that can be treated with PTK:
- Corneal opacities
- Scarring on the cornea
- Recurrent epithelial erosion syndrome (REES)
- Irregular surfaces
PTK VS. PRK: What’s the difference?
The key difference between PTK and Photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) is that PTK eye surgery treats medically necessary conditions, such as corneal dystrophy. Unlike PRK, which is a refractive surgery used to correct refractive errors like myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness) and astigmatism. In other words, PRK is performed for aesthetic purposes.
Aldo, PTK does not form a flap, making it suitable for patients with thin corneas or dry eyes, and no vision correction reshaping is performed during PTK.
Recovery from PTK
PTK is an FDA-approved laser treatment for anterior corneal diseases, as research indicates that it is an effective solution for corneal erosion syndrome, with more than 90% success rate! Occasionally, patients may require multiple PTK laser treatments for long-lasting results.
As for recovery guidelines, you’ll be required to take several days off work and use antibiotic eye drops (along with pain medication) to alleviate any discomfort or pain.
Avoid touching or rubbing your eye. You’ll be provided with a protective eyeshield (similar to an eye patch) to prevent contact with your eyes, especially while sleeping.
Moreover, You may experience discomfort, slight pain, grittiness, light sensitivity, and haloes surrounding light for the first week post-op. This will gradually improve as the epithelium regenerates after a month, and tour eyes will completely heal by three to six months.
It is critical to follow your ophthalmologist’s recommendations and attend all follow-up appointments. However, you need to arrange for someone to drive you to and from your surgery appointment, as you will not be able to drive for at least a week.
Schedule a Consultation!
Novomed is one of the leading care providers for advanced PTK and PRK technology, and We value the confidence you have placed in us. It won’t take long for you to realize you’re in the hands of some of UAE’s best ophthalmologists once you walk through the doors of Novomed.
For a diagnosis and to discuss treatment options of any eye condition, schedule your appointment by booking online with us or contacting our call center to get started.