PRK Instructions


You are scheduled for PRK surgery. Read the following information. It contains information on what you need to bring with you on the day of surgery, and what to expect on the day of surgery.

Day of Surgery:

Report to the refractive laser center at our Palm Desert office and return at _______ AM / PM on ___/___ _____for post-op in Palm Springs / Palm Desert

Things you will need to bring with you day of surgery:

  1. Have a driver, other than yourself, as you will not be able to drive following your surgery.
  2. We do provide a free pair of goggles in your post-operative kit but you may switch to wearing your tinted sunglasses for comfort and protection during the day.
  3. If you are having surgery on one eye only, you can bring your contact lens or spectacles for the non–operative eye. If you bring your spectacles, you can remove the lens for the operative eye.

Other important information:

  1. You need to start your post-operative eye drops on the day of surgery.
  2. Be prepared to be with us from one to two hours on the day of surgery. Usually, it will not be long, but sometimes there may be delays. Your driver can drop you off and can be contacted when you are ready for discharge or they may wait for you in our waiting area.
  3. You can eat or drink prior to surgery.
  4. On the day of your surgery please DO NOT WEAR facial piercing’s, a necklace, makeup (especially around the eyes), facial lotions and creams, perfume, cologne or aftershave
  5. If you become ill, call our office prior to your surgery as you may need to reschedule.
  6. Prior to your date of surgery DO NOT WEAR:
    • Soft or Toric contact lens: 5 days prior to pre-op evaluation and day of surgery.
    • Gas permeable or Hard contact lens: 10 days prior to pre-op evaluation and 1 month prior to surgery day.

General guidelines:

  • DO NOT remove your bandage contact lens. The doctor will remove it for you.
  • DO NOT rub your eyes following surgery for the first week.
  • If the contact lens falls out, DO NOT attempt to reinsert it. Continue to use the medications as directed and contact us.
  • Use ice packs to reduce your discomfort.
  • No strenuous physical activity while contact lens is in place.
  • It is OK to shower, but try to avoid getting water and soap in your eyes for the two weeks following surgery.
  • Try to stay away from smoke, dusty areas or chemical vapors for two weeks following PRK.
  • Wear your sunglasses with 100% UVA and UVB protection whenever you are outside.
  • DO NOT drive or operate machinery/appliances until advised by the doctor after contact lens removal.
  • DO NOT swim in a pool, the ocean, or use hot tubs, steam baths, or saunas for one month after surgery.
  • Some eye drops may sting for up to two minutes or cause temporary blurred vision. Chilling all of your eye drops in your refrigerator may help make them less irritating.
  • Do NOT drive unless you feel safe and confident with your vision.

Surgical discomfort:

Use the medications as prescribed by your doctor.


  • Regular diet the day before and after surgery.
  • Drink at least 8 glasses of fluid a day (non-alcohol and non-caffeinated beverages)

How to use eye drops:

  • Wash your hands before administration of eye drop medications.
  • DO NOT touch the eye dropper, or let dropper touch your eye.
  • Shake eye drops well before using. With your head tilted back, gazing upward and pull down on lower eyelids, making a pouch.
  • Place dropper directly over the eye and administer the prescribed number of drops.
  • Look downward and gently close your eye for 1 or 2 minutes.
  • Try not to blink or rub your eye.
  • Do NOT rinse the eye dropper.
  • WAIT 5 minutes between every drop administered.



    • Vitamin c 1000mg/tablet. Take 1 tablet once a day to facilitate wound healing.
    • Antibiotic ____________________1 drop 4 times to operative eye(s). Beginning after surgery.
    • Artificial tears 1 drop to operative eye(s). As needed when you feel like your eyes are drying.

Steroid ______________________1 drop to operative eye(s) 4 times a day until advised to begin tapering by the doctor.

Comfort eye drops:

One drop every 6 hours as needed for pain.

What to expect

  1. Your paperwork will be reviewed. Any corrections or additions that are needed will be made.
  2. Your identification will be confirmed; along with the process you will be asked if you have any allergies to any medications.
  3. Our team will prepare you with several eye drops and sterile eye solution before you go to the laser suite.
  4. For the comfort and to reduce unnecessary head movement, a special pillow will be placed under your head and will be lying down on your back.
  5. You will be lowered into position.
  6. You will see a round ring and flashing red light in the center. Focus on the flashing red light during surgery.
  7. A lid speculum will be placed into the operative eye to prevent the eye from blinking.
  8. A brush will be used to remove the epithelial layer from the surface of the cornea. It will not be painful because topical numbing medication will be applied. Once the epithelial tissue is removed, your surgeon will apply the laser.
  9. You will be asked to focus on the flashing red light and the procedures will begin. The flashing red light may get a little blurry during the procedure, which lasts only a few seconds to minutes depending on your prescription. The procedure is painless. The laser will apply a cool beam of light which gently reshapes the cornea.
  10. You will hear a pulsating sound. This is just the sound of the laser at work. A couple of eye drops (an anti-inflammatory, an antibiotic and a re-wetting drop) will be installed into your eye following your procedure. A bandage contact lens will be applied for temporary use only. Our staff at your follow-up visit will remove this lens.
  11. Please note your vision may be blurry immediately after the procedure, but will improve in time.
  12. As soon as you get home, you should begin taking your medications as directed and take a nap for 4-6 hours to allow the healing process to begin
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