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July 2017

The Effects of Smoking on PRK or LASIK

By | Eye Care Update, What's New

Many people are excited about the possibility of not wearing glasses after laser corrective surgery.  However, one thing that is often over looked is the impact of smoking after a procedure called photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) or LASIK.  Smoking can affected the healing process of the cornea, especially in PRK where no flap is created.   In PRK, the top layer must essentially regenerate itself complete.  This is healing process is much longer than LASIK.  With that said, research has shown that people who continue to smoke during the recovery period are at higher risk for corneal haze in both procedures.  Corneal haze could lead to decreased vision or an sub-optimal outcome.  In general, we recommend that every should stop smoking, not just for the eyes but for the body.  If quitting isn’t an option, then at minimum stop a few weeks before the procedure and wait until the cornea completely heals to help obtain the best possible surgical outcome.

 

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