As a well-known authority on LASIK eye surgery, Sandra Belmont, MD, FACS, has treated a variety of patients, from celebrities including The Tonight Show’s Jimmy Fallon to other physicians and members of her own family. Although Dr. Belmont has a stellar reputation for her results with LASIK surgery, she is also a leading provider of advanced surface ablation (ASA) procedures, including photorefractive keratectomy (PRK), an alternative to LASIK vision correction surgery.
A predecessor to LASIK, PRK is a highly effective laser eye surgery that is better suited for certain individuals with thin corneas or other factors that do not make them appropriate LASIK candidates. With both PRK and LASIK, Dr. Belmont reshapes the curvature of the cornea to correct the visual error causing nearsightedness, farsightedness and / or astigmatism.
With both PRK and LASIK, Dr. Belmont must find a way to access the corneal tissue that lies behind the surface of the cornea, so she can reshape it. The main difference between PRK and LASIK involves the way she achieves this objective. With PRK, Dr. Belmont gently removes the cells on the surface of the cornea instead of cutting a flap below the cornea’s surface (as she does with LASIK).
There are benefits and drawbacks to both PRK and LASIK. One of the biggest advantages of PRK is that there is no risk of developing flap-related complications. Another advantage of undergoing PRK in New York City with Dr. Belmont is that it is a more appropriate treatment option for patients with corneas that are too thin to withstand the creation of a flap.
Who Can Benefit from PRK
In the past — in particular, when PRK was first approved by the FDA — only individuals with mild to moderate nearsightedness were considered appropriate PRK candidates. Thanks to advancements in PRK, however, a vast majority of patients are now considered suitable candidates for the procedure. With individuals who are nearsighted, Dr. Belmont flattens the cornea, so it is not as steep. For patients who are farsighted, the NYC PRK surgeon does the opposite, reshaping the cornea so it is steeper. She can also smooth an irregularly shaped cornea into a more normal shape, thereby correcting astigmatism.
Customized PRK Treatment
Another aspect of PRK that has changed since its inception is that the treatment can now be customized for each unique eye.
Traditionally, the laser eye surgeon used an individual’s lens prescription to calibrate the laser used in PRK. This means that if two people had the same prescription, they would receive the same PRK laser eye treatment.
Now, Dr. Belmont can employ the advanced CustomVue wavefront-guided technology to create a distinct map of each eye’s imperfections, including extremely subtle visual errors. She then uses the three-dimensional (3D) map to customize the laser treatment for each individual eye.
Find Out if You Could Benefit from Custom Advanced PRK
If you think you might be a suitable candidate for PRK, LASIK or another type of laser eye surgery, don’t hesitate to contact Dr. Belmont for a consultation. During your comprehensive consultation, Dr. Belmont examines your eye health before recommending your available treatment options, which may involve a “no-cut” alternative to LASIK surgery such as PRK.
To schedule a consultation with Dr. Belmont, contact Belmont Eye Center by calling (212) 486-2020.