Epi Lasik and Lasek Eye Surgery
Epi lasik is a new corneal surface refractive surgery. In this procedure, an ultra thin flap of 30-50 Micron will be created by special motorized blade. This flap contains only corneal epithelial layer, which is the superficial layer of the cornea and it does not contain corneal stroma.
In another words, in this procedure there will be separation of corneal epithelial layer from the rest of the cornea without dissecting the corneal stroma, not like lasik in which the created flap contain both the epithelial layer and corneal stroma because the cutting will be through the corneal stroma.
Patient evaluation is done in the doctor clinic and it is very important because not every one is a good candidate for this kind of surgery.
Before you visit your eye doctor, it would be better for you to have a general concept about the surgery to be able to interact with your surgeon and to avoid serious complications. Read more about Patient Evaluation for Lasik.
Before the Surgery
Before the surgery starts, a topical antibiotics can be applied prophylactically and also NSAIDs can be applied for pain.
Patient is positioned on the operating table and the fellow eye is covered.
Epi Lasik Procedure
Skin surround the eye is cleaned and drop of topical anesthesia is applied and the eye is widely opened with lid speculum.
The periphery of the cornea is marked with circles to allow the surgeon to know the reference points to replace the epithelial flap over the corneal bed at the exact position.
Suction ring is applied to the conea to stabilize the eye then epikeratome or an epithelial separator is applied to the cornea
This special motorized blade will separate the epithelial layer from the underlying corneal stroma and then the suction is removed.
Epi-keratome and microkeratome are not the same, epi-keratome will not cut through the stroma and only will act to separate the epithelial layer from the stroma without cutting through the stroma while the microkeratome will cut through corneal stroma.
The epithelial flap is lifted and the underlying corneal stroma is revealed.
Corneal ablation is initiated with excimer laser and then the corneal bed and the epithelial flap are hydrated. After that the epithelial flap is replaced back to the same place and the eye is left to dry for 2-5 minutes to allow adhesion with the underlying cornea.
Post Operation Care
Post operation care consists of eye drops, bandage contact lenses and follow up visits to the clinic.
Combinations of antibiotics like tobramycin or ciprofloxacin, steroid like. Read more about Post Lasik care.