PRK – 4 Weeks Later

Four weeks have passed since having my eyes dissolved and zapped. There was significant improvement over that first week following the surgery, but the past three weeks have shown improvements so slight that it is next to impossible to know whether my vision is better one day or the next. The cumulative affect is greater and I do say that my eyesight has definitely increased in the three past weeks, but nowhere near the acuity I had with glasses or contacts… yet.

If I had to put a percentage on it, I would rate my current vision at about sixty percent of optimal. For two and a half weeks, I have slowly clambered my way up to being a contributing member of society within the realm of operating independently. I’ve regained the ability to drive safely and work staring at a computer screen for a full day’s time, albeit with a major increase in font size. I wasn’t very comfortable driving at night until about a week ago when either I got used to the smudgy lights, or my vision got good enough to drive safely in a starbursted world.

Ghosting is still the biggest problem. This goes away with time, and from some reports I’ve read, mine is still healing faster than others. Halos around lights at night have lessened in thickness and brightness and have turned more into starbursts. Such oddities are limited more towards distant, smaller lights rather than the brake lights ahead of me. They still exist on bigger lights, but are absorbed by the size of them.

I have gotten used to reading in a big font size, although last week I was able to move up one resolution setting. It feels like I may be operating at this capacity for a few more weeks as my eyes continue to heal and the ghosting dissipates.

My left eye is definitely healing faster than the right, which seems to be drier on average. I’ve been told that dryness can play a significant role in a speedy recovery, so I have been dousing my eyes with the preservative-free drops quite often. My pamphlet said that after three weeks I can switch to regular eyedrops (with preservatives). Call it paranoia, but I’m still using the preservative-free kind even though they cost an arm and a leg.

Today was the last day of taking steroid drops, so it’s just rewetting drops from here on out. Next week I go in for the one month checkup, and I should report back by then. Strangely enough, with all the ghosting going on, I think my left eye may be nearing the 20/20 vision mark when I focus just right. I can still see duplicate images, but I can tell the center image is much crisper. I can do something similar with the right eye, but can tell it’s worse and farther behind than the right.

I’ll give another update next week after my eye appointment. Happy holidays!

51 thoughts on “PRK – 4 Weeks Later

  1. I’m at the 3.5 week mark. I only had my right eye done because my left eye didn’t need correction.

    When people say they have “ghosting”, I’d like to know how bad it is. Mine is very bad, especially at distances. If I look at a stop sign from half a block away, I see two stop signs. There is the primary stop sign and then a second image of the stop sign, at half the intensity, just up and to the left of the primary image. The brighter it is, the worse it appears. In bright sunshine, I basically am seeing double of everything. Last week my eye doctor said, “It’s about 1 diapoter of astigmatism. We see this. It can often get better over the next few months. It will be interesting to see where you are at at week 6.”

    “Can often get better”?! “Interesting”?!

    This is freaking me out. This ghost to the upper left of everything I see has been consistently there for the last 2 weeks. It isn’t changing, diminishing, or going away. I feel sick when I look at things. Blurriness is way more tolerable than double vision. I feel that something went wrong and I am left with this astigmatism and will need glasses/contacts more than I did before just to function.

    Did anyone else have it this bad? And did it get better??

    • I’m 3 weeks out and I have the same problem. I look at the moon and I see two. One image is slightly below the first image so that it looks more like a figure 8. I haven’t seen the doctor since my 3 day appt but am scheduled to go back next week. I was about a -10 with 1 D of astigmatism in each eye and I’m told the stronger the prescription, the longer the recovery. I’m trying to stay positive but this double vision is nauseating. I’m so grateful for this blog because I know it will get better and I appreciate the support.

      • I’m back… Now it has been 3.5 months, and I STILL have this bad ghosting. It’s seriousness depends on the distance to which I’m focusing and the amount of light. Before the surgery my astigmatism was 0.50-0.75 diopters. Now it is 1.0 diopters in the opposite direction!

        It’s most noticeable at infinity on a bright, sunny day when driving. I use glasses for driving. It’s not as bad when I focus at, say, 12 feet or less.

        My doctor recently said that it might take 6 months to settle down. But, at the same time, he suggested, “If you need a touch up you’ll have to wait a year, anyway.” He seemed surprised by the results and said, “Nobody ends up with WORSE vision…”

        Well, I did. I’m very disappointed. I’ve very doubtful that this condition will improve. Do I even bother going through this surgery again in a year? Will I end up with even worse results?

        • Hi Robert,
          I am sharing some of your concerns. I had an appointment with my normal optometrist yesterday as post op care at the 2 week mark. Both distance and close up details are blurry and double. I had a slight astigmatism before the surgery. He was concerned that the doctor who performed the procedure (who he referred me to) over-corrected my vision. I, like several people who started becoming frustrated at the 10 day mark, came here looking for answers and possibly solace. I sincerely appreciate this blog and all the people who’ve shared. I do find some comfort in the fact that symptoms and time frames seem similar, however the vision up close being blurry where it never was before does scare me. My question to you is where is your vision now, if you don’t mind my asking?

  2. wow, I don’t have that at all… so sorry to not be able to give you input in a good way. I see a tiny bit of ghosting when I read type on white screen or page and that’s it. I am week 3 today… I have blurriness off and on but no double to speak of… let us know if it got any better?

  3. I did PRK 4 weeks ago and just now it started to get better. It’s still a little blurry but I think its getting better. I was -5 in both eyes. In my 3 weeks app I was seeing 20/35 and 20/40. I’ll be seeing the Dr again next week. I think I’m seeing a little better now.

    • I have heard that it can take up to six months to fully recover, but often there is a full recovery in three months. I am three weeks into my recovery on my right eye. I had another doctor do two lasik procedures on it and on the last procedure it looks like he tore the flap when replacing it into position after the procedure (so I only got 20/25 and my astigmatism was still there). It was frustrating as I did not want to revisit having my eyes done again. The problem the first doctor created was that the torn flap created a lot od scar tissue so that lasik is no longer an option. So now I am having a different doctor (who comes recommended by other doctors and people I’ve talked to) do the prk. I still am not 20/25 in that eye (probably 20/40 right now) but I have not had any ghosting. I cannot read print with my other eye shut as there is still a lot of blurriness. Though I have been told by my doctor that I should get 20/20 or better and the astigmatism should be resolved by three months if not earlier. I would recommend researching different doctors and getting the best one you think is available to you. There are good doctors and others that probably shouldn’t be practicing. An RN former colleague of mine had once said a lot of them are just butchers. That said, there has been improvement in the procedure and I haven’t heard of anyone not getting at least 20/40 vision after a follow up correction.

  4. I am 3 weeks and 1/2 and I am not happy yet. I still miss my vision witn contact lens at this point. Ghosting is killing me. But once again thank you for this blog and i will stay positive.

  5. I’m back… It is 9 months since my PRK on my right eye. As described above, I had bad ghosting after my procedure. It never did go away and my astigmatism ended up being slightly worse than before the surgery. My doctors discussed the situation a couple months ago and concluded that I probably need to be re-lasered. But before proceeding, my surgeon wanted to first perform a surgical procedure where my epethelium is removed but no lasering is performed. He speculated that the epethelium may have healed funny, with some scar tissue, after my original procedure. By removing it and letting it re-heal, we could rule that out as the cause of the ghosting.

    It’s now 3 weeks since the epethelium has been removed in my 2nd procedure. The ghosting is still there. I can tell the astigmatism has not improved. If anything, it is worse and I’m actually seeing 3 ghost images. Great.

    So, in a couple months, I may have to go back in for another PRK. But this time I’m going to get a 2nd opinion.

    This is not fun! I’m bummed out that I had to be one of the few who had terrible results.

    • I’m back… It’s been 2.5 months since my epethelium was removed in my 2nd procedure. Amazinging, the astigmatism has decreased significantly! It was 1.75 and now it is 0.50. This means that ghosting has been dramatically reduced. It’s not perfect, but I can live with this. It will be interesting to see how my eye will be in a few months.

  6. Thanks for your blog, I am 2.5 weeks post PRK and continue to check in here to confirm that my issues are ‘normal’. I’m healing pretty well, but missing the clarity contacts gave me and really annoyed with the halos-ghosting-smudginess (not sure what to call it) of lights at night. Thanks again!

    • Ugh! Well I WAS healing well and then at the 3+ week mark, I got the haze and ghosting at night has gotten a lot worse. I’m feeling discouraged with a tinge of regret. I think the hard part is being happy with my vision and then it getting worse. I know ‘patience’ is the key word for PRK folks, but… So, has anyone had haze come weeks in, is that normal, can it go away? Can haze be corrected? Thanks all.

      • Crystal, I am at 3.5 weeks today and thought things were getting better until the last couple of days… Now it seems worse. What ended up happening with yours? Are you happy? Did you require anything additional for procedures? I am working on the patience part. I tell myself not to be frustrated until the 3 month mark but didn’t realize things might get worse before they get better….

  7. Thanks very much for sharing your experience… it seems that most surgeons don’t explain as much about the recovery process as they could. I’m coming up on the 4 week mark in a few days time, so I thought I’d share where I’m at.

    My surgery went great and I only had a day or two of pain, and after 2.5 weeks my left eye was razor sharp (though probably only 20/30 on the chart). After 3.5 weeks my left eye is nearly as good as my wife’s bifocal vision (she had Lasik 7 years ago and was assessed as being 20/20).

    My right eye, on the other hand, is taking its sweet time and is fairly blurry at all distances. I too work at a computer all day, and I employ a combination of closing my right eye so as to read with my left (quite annoying) and making the fonts really big. I don’t really have halos or proper double vision, just blurriness… but if it wasn’t for accounts like yours I’d be freaking out that my surgery had failed and I was doomed to a lifetime of poor depth perception and closing one eye to read stuff. As it is I’m a little bit nervous but just trying to trust that it will come good in time.

    • I’m at close to 4 weeks post PRK and my left which was a simple -1.50 correction is close to what I was with glasses yet my right which had -1.50 plus quite a bit of astigmatism is blurry all the way through the focal range.
      My eyes have been quite dry and they recommended tear duct plugs at 2 weeks plus different eye drops. I wake up most mornings with my eyelids slightly stuck to my eyeballs.
      It’s good to read that astigmatism IS/Does take longer that 1 month to correct with this procedure.
      I just hope I haven’t done permanent damage from the dryness.

  8. Thanks very much for sharing your experience… it seems that most surgeons don’t explain as much about the recovery process as they could. I’m coming up on the 4 week mark in a few days time, so I thought I’d share where I’m at.

    My surgery went great and I only had a day or two of pain, and after 2.5 weeks my left eye was razor sharp (though probably only 20/30 on the chart). After 3.5 weeks my left eye is nearly as good as my wife’s bifocal vision (she had Lasik 7 years ago and was assessed as being 20/20).

    My right eye, on the other hand, is taking its sweet time and is fairly blurry at all distances. I too work at a computer all day, and I employ a combination of closing my right eye so as to read with my left (quite annoying) and making the fonts really big. I don’t really have halos or proper double vision, just blurriness… but if it wasn’t for accounts like yours I’d be freaking out that my surgery had failed and I was doomed to a lifetime of poor depth perception and closing one eye to read stuff. As it is I’m a little bit nervous but just trying to trust that it will come good in time.

  9. all my DR said was the recovery is longer than lasik. If I had read this ahead of time I probably would have stayed with low power glasses after cateract surgery, I had PRK on 29 March. Luckily I am not seeing ghost images, but it is hard seeing the computer at work and I can not enlarge the font on my screen. Three months after cateract surgery my left eye has a “white cloud’ that “circulates” over my left eye that the DR can not see and is still there after my PRK surgery for “tweeking ” my vision. I am so frustrated with the weirdness in my left eye but my vision is still better in my left than the right after PRK BUT I still can not see as well as before my PRK surgery

    • Karen, I realize your post is almost a year old, but I am really wondering if your eyes have gotten better by now??? I had cataract surgery on both eyes in March and April of 2013. The recovery period was very long for the right eye. Now I am looking into PRK to fix about a +2.00 astigmatism in both eyes. I’d be devastated if I saw even worse after PRK. I also have Type I diabetes, which I’ve had for 44 years.

  10. I had PRK about 7 months ago and had bad results. Both eyes were over corrected and I was totally unable to read and also unable to see anything at a distance. I waited patiently as the doctor instructed but my eyes got worse before getting better. I think they actually were getting better but what I needed was them to get worse to see clearer. Better meant stronger which my prescription was too strong already. It was like wearing contact lenses they putting on your near sighted glasses at the same time. My eyes required reading glasses of 1.75 for distance and 3.25 for reading. It seemed I got a different persons prescription instead of mine. I was suppose to get mono-vision where I could read in my left eye, both eyes ended up with the same over correction. I felt this was something that no one else in the world had experienced as I used to read perfect without glasses or contacts as my vision was near sighted with 8.50- contact lenses for distance.
    I decided to go for the enhancement for tweeking one eye and it has been 10 days now. I am happy to say that the vision has improved. This time I noticed they put your name, address date of birth on a name tag for each patient. I recommend this for every doctor’s office. I really think this time it is the correct amount of correction needed and I will be able to see clearly eventually. I will probably do the left eye once this one heals completely. I did have the cloud on the right eye before the 2nd surgery but it has now gone away. I think I may actually be able to live without glasses one day.

  11. I had PRK about 7 months ago and had bad results. Both eyes were over corrected and I was totally unable to read and also unable to see anything at a distance. I waited patiently as the doctor instructed but my eyes got worse before getting better. I think they actually were getting better but what I needed was them to get worse to see clearer. Better meant stronger which my prescription was too strong already. It was like wearing contact lenses then putting on your near sighted glasses at the same time. My eyes required reading glasses of 1.75 for distance and 3.25 for reading. It seemed I got a different persons prescription instead of mine. I was suppose to get mono-vision where I could read in my left eye, both eyes ended up with the same over correction. I felt this was something that no one else in the world had experienced as I used to read perfect without glasses or contacts as my vision was near sighted with 8.50- contact lenses for distance.
    I decided to go for the enhancement for tweeking one eye and it has been 10 days now. I am happy to say that the vision has improved. This time I noticed they put your name, address date of birth on a name tag for each patient. I recommend this for every doctor’s office. I really think this time it is the correct amount of correction needed and I will be able to see clearly eventually. I will probably do the left eye once this one heals completely. I did have the cloud on the right eye before the 2nd surgery but it has now gone away. I think I may actually be able to live without glasses one day.

  12. I had PRK 8 weeks ago on my right eye. I am very discouraged because I have the hazy and blurry vision still. Recently I have the double vision and feel sick to my stomach. I still have to wear my glasses for distance and close my right eye to read. About 12 years ago I had the lasik procedure and was extremely happy. The reason for prk was I was getting nearsighted again and was not a candidate because of the flap issue. My doctor says I just have to be patient.

  13. been 35 days and i am about to panic, i thought i would be stable by now! i had lasik 10 years ago and went in for an enhansement for my right eye. eye is blurry and vision comes and goes, mostly goes, i went in for a check up yesterday and my vision had regressed from two weeks before that. i used regular eye drops that my eye doctor gave me and have been concerned they might have messed me up, i am back to using the preservative free now, hopefully not to late!

    • I would say… don’t panic yet. I’m 3.5 months in and still stabalizing. Although I’ve had issues with high pressures from the steroids and thin corneas. I was 20/20 after surgery and hit my bottom at 20/70, now back up to 20/25. The lesson behind PRK is patience. Ugh… so hard when it is your vision.

    • Hang in there Mark. I had Lasik in 1998 with perfect results. But I needed a touch up to my right eye in recent years, as described in my previous posts. The result was terrible. My vision was a blurry disaster with double-vision or ghosting. It didn’t improve – even after 8 months.

      So my doctors decided to have me in to remove the epethelium but not relaser the eye. The removal of the epethelium is standard procedure before zapping it with the laser. After this 2nd PRK procedure, which happened in January, 2013, my vision was still a mess. I was sure I was doomed. But then, at around 2 months, my vision started to get dramatically better. Now it’s very good.

      So why did my eye not heal properly after the first PRK yet turned out great after the second PRK procedure? I don’t know. But there is one thing I did differently. I noticed the the humidity in my office is very low. My eye was healing with 30% RH air. So, for the second PRK procedure, I set up a humidifier right beside my desk. It raised the humidity to 45% RH. My eye did not feel dry and scratchy like it did after the first procedure. And I ended up with way better vision. Coincidence? I don’t know, but I recommend making sure that, after laser surgery, you make sure you have 40+% RH for the first couple months.

    • been 36 days, woke up this morning and my vision was 100 percent better!!! thank you Robert and Crystal for the kind words during my major panic yesterday.

      • Great that your vision has improved Mark. PRK is such an experience. I am now going through my send round with the enhancement and it’s been a roller coaster ride. I flew up north over the weekend, now that I’m back my vision has gone back to be about the same as what I had before the enhancement done back in May. I am scheduled for another enhancement on the left eye in July.

        • i had less trouble with a hip replacement than i have with PRK, the healing time was quicker! good luck, Jeff, it is quite the ordeal!

      • Glad to hear it, however… is it still? It has been 5 days and it is the PRK roller coaster. I think I’m 20/20! Wow, what a ride.

  14. I had custom PRK three weeks ago and love it. Great experience. Surgery did not hurt or so, the contacts were in for four days and felt SUPER comfortable throughout. Did NOT have any pain whatsoever in the days afterwards and I am healing really good. I was nearsighted (-3.5 and -3.75 with Astigmatismn), the left eye ( got six seconds more laser treatment) is trailing a bit behind but all in all I am seeing fine. The crispness is still missing and fine print is hard to read but otherwise I am completely functioning and doing my daily stuff. At my 2. Check up I was 20/70 and 20/50, one week afterwards I was 20/25 and 20/30. I am expected to hit at least 20/20 within the next two weeks. Don’t have any halo, just slight ghosting sometimes in one eye, but only when I am tired. So far I am super happy!

  15. I had LASEK on August 19, 2013. It has been slow but when they removed my bandage contacts a week later, my vision was 20/50. I started driving on Sept 6 and thought everything was going fine, but then yesterday noticed that my vision has gotten a little bit hazy and blurry in my right eye. Going back in today to get checked out. The doctor’s office said what I am experiencing is expected but I’m still going to get it checked out. I really don’t wnat to regret my decision – I had been wearing glasses since I was ten!

  16. Hi there. I am just under 2 weeks after I had PRK and the docs say my vision is 20/20 but I am so sensitive to light that turning on the light in the bathroom is painful. Driving, particularly in the morning is horrible – I have to wear the sunglasses and the non script clip on ones from my old glasses overtop – like I’m driving with the shades on and holding the clip on portion to cover my eyes. And I still have problems keeping my eyes open – I have to squint so much I get daily headaches.

    Anyone else have such severe sensitivity? I should mention I also have light blue eyes.

    • It’s been about 10 months since I originally had my PRK surgery. Both eyes were over corrected so in May this year I had the right eye re-done. I’m glad to say I am now seeing 20/20 in this eye. There are still days where it gets fuzzy but I’m still seeing improvement daily. The left eye I had done for reading. This eye was done about 2 months ago and I am still reading perfect. Hopefully it doesn’t get any worse but right now I am very happy with the results. For about 8 months I really struggling to determine if I made the right decision but now I realize that I did as my sight is excellent.

    • Hey I know I wore double sunglasses one day I think it was 2.5 weeks after PRK. It looked silly but I didn’t care because I needed it.

  17. Hi! It’s been almost 3 weeks since my surgery. My vision is definitely starting to clear up and my eyes haven’t felt as horribly dry as they originally did, but for some reason today my eyes have been incredibly dry and burning non-stop… almost as bad the first week after I had is done. I’m still using artificial tears, but thats it. Has anyone else experienced this? Should I just continue to use my drops more frequently? Would it help for me to try a new type of artificial tears?

  18. I had PRK on my right eye 24 days ago and this blog is keeping me from losing hope as I have significant blurriness daily. To compensate I close my eye about half the time when I drive to see better. I appreciate all the experiences shared and I use moisture drops but my doctors did not differentiate between preservative free – does that matter as I don’t know what kind I have been using. Dreading the thought of going through this with my left eye once the right heals.

  19. 4 weeks after my PRK. Checked with doctor. Was told that my left eye is 20/30 and right eye is 20/40. Combined is still 20/40.

    Far sight is improved and clearer. Near sight is not good. Have to use +2.75 reading glass to read cell phone and computer.

    Was told that the vision will still improve and I can tell some very minor improvements daily.

    The artificial tears does help and help to recover faster, as I was told and I think that it is true.

    Hope that vision is improved quicker. Some minor prescription is needed to correct my vision better. Will ask doctor to give me the prescription as I have to be on business trip.

  20. Thank you for sharing your post PRK surgery experiences . I had- 0.75 myopia and 0.5 astigmatism after a Lasik undercorrection. finished my three weeks post surgery. I am seeing very slow improvement, my astigmatism got worse , Hope this slow improvement continue until I have an optimal vision. I will see my doc in a week.

  21. Hi, just wanted to share some details of my PRK CXL ongoing experience. A short brief of myself:

    Before PRK:
    – 51 year old male, slim build, 5,7”, 56kg
    – Fairly fit, into trail running (50k), hiking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing
    – Shortsighted since 12 years of age
    – Current prescription about -7.0 on both eyes with slight astigmatism
    – Wearing daily disposables Moist lenses for the past 15 years
    – Still able to read using contact lenses with Prescription of -6.00 and -5.00 – monocular, so no need for reading glasses
    – Need -1.25, -1 .0 glasses for driving at night
    – Glares, starburst present in both eyes
    – Dry eyes (both), especially in the mornings
    – Right eye has always had a dimmer vision since I realized it in my late 20s
    – Diagnosed with glaucoma in June 2015
    – Estimated 85-90% of total peripheral vision remaining
    – Projected deterioration if untreated of 10% every 8-10 years
    – Eye pressure around 22-23 in both eyes
    – Significant blind spot in right eye, upper right quadrant
    – Diagnosed with Kerenatocus PMD variant in October 2015
    – Corneal thickness around 570 before surgery
    – Underwent SLT in November 2015
    – Pressure reduced to 13-14 in both eyes after SLT
    – Pressure went back up to 22-23 in February 2016
    – Under went PRK with CXL in right February 16th, 2016, in the right eye only
    – Schedule for PRK-CXL in the left eye after minimum 3 months when vision stabilizes (hopefully)
    After PRK and CXL:
    – Corneal thickness in right eye around 440
    – Eye pressure, 13 in right eye (treated eye) 19 in left eye (untreated)

    I went to 3 LASIK /PRK eye centers, 1 international and 2 in the Pacific Northwest (Canada). Two did not recommend and refused any type of corrective surgery, due to corneal abnormalities as described above. The one, which said I was a PRK-CXL candidate, is apparently a very highly regarded international corneal specialist. The specialist is a person of few words, he either tells you if you are a candidate or not.

    Day 0 (Feb 16, 2016) – I was naturally apprehensive. Procedure in total took about 45mins (PRK+CXL). No pain, could barely see in the right eye, but had glimpses of clear vision. Took a taxi home alone, just due to Activan (muscle relaxant).

    Day 1 – Went back to the clinic by public transit. The specialist says healing normally (3 min examination). No pain, no light sensitivity.

    Day 2-4 – No pain, just slight discomfort, no light sensitivity. Hazy vision, severe ghosting. Totally non-functional vision wise, without my left untreated eye.

    Day 4 – Supposed to have the BCL removed, specialist says healing but slow, decides to keep the BCL for another 3 days.

    Day 8 – BCL removed. Vision tested around 20/50. Severe ghosting, hazy vision. Near vision in right eye is non-existent. Not sure if I made the right decision. Regrets, regrets, regrets…

    Day 9 – Visit to my eye doctor (PRK clinic does not do the scheduled follow-ups). Tested around 20/40. Very hazy vision, severe ghosting (seeing around 6 images). No pain, just discomfort, like wearing a dirty contact lens.

    Day 9-12 – Severe dry eyes, using refresh drops liberally, severe ghosting and hazy vision. Vision is improving but very slowly. Able to drive, using more of my left eye. Near vision in right eye is improving ever so slightly.

    Day 16-to Present (Mar 4 2016) – Visit to eye doctor. Says still healing, tested around 20/25. Dry eye improving slightly. Vision improving slowly, less ghosting, but still hazy. Able to drive and work fairly well on the computer. However, note that this is mainly due to my left eye, which is untreated.

    So far, I believe and I am hopeful that I made the right decision. There is naturally some uncertainty but it does feels good to be able to see (a little in my case), without the aid of contact lenses or glasses. I plan to start getting back into my fitness routine in a week or so.

    James

  22. So thankful for this blog and all of your comments! I had PRK done on both eyes April 1, and am feeling frustrated at my healing. I can totally see and read everything within arms length, which I could not do before, but anything beyond that at this 2-1/2 week, is blurry. I am encouraged by reading that I am healing about as normal as can be with this procedure. Dr’s say I am okay to drive with 20/40 vision… YIKES that’s scary! But I won’t because of the blur. At times one or the other will be clear for a little bit, but at night it’s blurry consistently. Still not able to work though (school bus driver), but it’s been giving me lots of time to clean out stuff I don’t need from my house, keep up the lawn and do a lot of stuff around the house!

  23. James
    I have read your post and saw the date you had your surgery, today is May 5, and my left eye is 3 weeks (old) today, my right is 2 weeks. I was wondering where you were in your sight recovery. Mine are ghosting and very blurred. They seem to not work together. But…that’s probably because of having 2 different visions because of there being done a week apart. As I read your post your results sounded like mine. Could you Please give me some reassurance.

    • Hi Christy,

      The healing process is slow. Ghosting is still there but the brain will automatically correct and balance vision and that is acceptable for me. I never had great vision, but somehow now, I can see just as well (distance wise) as some younger people who do not even wear glasses.

      July 5th today and I am close to 5 months after PRK and CXL in my right eye. I am off eye drops. My distance vision is good. Near vision is non-existent, I will for sure need reading glasses my right eye. Now I have to contemplate the level of correctness I will do for my left eye as I have not used reading glasses before and would want to avoid it as much as I can. I just want to be able to ready my phone and GPS when I am outdoors and cannot imagine having to use reading glasses on the trails/mountains.

      Ironically, my right eye feels a lot healthier (less floaters, less dry and no irritation, glaucoma/blind spot still there) than my left (still wearing contact, still gets itchy/irritated) so I am very pleased with the surgery in general. I also noticed that I do not need glasses for driving at night anymore as the corrected eye is good enough.

  24. Thank you for this blog. I will be 4 weeks out on Wednesday May 18th 2016. I am 45 so feeling the effects already of needing reading glasses. Before PRK I was -6.5 in both eyes with astigmatism in both eyes. I have worn glasses/contacts since age 11.

    I am feeling frustrated but this blog has given me a sliver of hope. I would say I am at 60% optimal vision right now. Last Monday I was tested at seeing 20/30. I go back tomorrow for my month check up.

    I am beginning to wonder if I will ever see well again… the smudginess and blurry vision is hard to deal with. I have to wear reading glasses to be able to see my phone or work on the computer.

    Hopefully its just a matter of time…. :(

    • Hi Jules, Are your eyes doing better?

      Before PRK, I was -4 in both eyes and had a similar amount of astigmatism (3.75 and 4). I have read on the internet that higher corrections like require longer healing time but when I asked the Dr, he didn’t seem to think there’s much of a correlation and just said everyone’s healing is different.

      I am at Day 18. It’s been really frustrating and outright terrifying, wondering when my eyes would get better and trying not to give voice to my worst fear that something went wrong. My vision is disappointingly, still blurry. Close vision is better (maybe about 70% of ideal) but far vision is not good (about 50% of ideal). I do not have double vision and ghosting is minimal, appearing only as light shadow around letters/numbers on the computer.

      At my 2 week follow up on June 30, I tested 20/25 but I think that was only because my eyes were nicely lubricated just before the test ( my vision is best after applying re-wetting drops but the nice vision lasts only a few seconds). The Dr. also said I have .75 astigmatism in my right eye but that should clear up as the cornea continues to heal.

      Between June 30 and today (Day 14 to 18), I have not observed any noticeable improvement. Today my eyes, especially the right one, is very dry and achy, requiring re-wetting every 15 minutes or so when I’m working on the computer. I find that wearing sunglasses helps mitigate the eye strain somewhat.

      I will post again after my 4 week follow up.

  25. Hi Jules and Pearl – Wondering how you’re both doing now – a month since you both last wrote.

    I had PRK on July 19th – and like everyone else who writes – I’m so thankful that others have shared their experiences and relieved they are similar to mine.

    I first went went off the contacts on June 11th – 2 weeks ahead of my eye appt with the Dr and was expecting the procedure to take place 2 days later on June 29th. Thanks to a scheduling error by the Drs office – I wasn’t able to have the procedure till July 19th – and by then I was so frustrated having to rely on a 2 year old pair of glasses to get me through commuting in and out of NYC everyday – plus deal with work. Looking back now though – at least I could see! THEN – after having the PRK done on both eyes – I thought maybe a week or two for healing and I’d be back in business. Especially since all the Lasik people were saying they were seeing everything fine within a day or 2 of surgery. I certainly knew PRK would be a different procedure – but I had no idea the HUGE difference in healing times! My eyesight fluctuated so much that first week – but again I thought in another week – it will all fall into place. Since then – I am able to read up close – my phone, the paper, a book – but still having a good deal of trouble with distance. About 6-8 feet away – and everything is very blurry. However if I squint – I can sharpen the focus somewhat – but it’s fleeting.

    I saw the Dr yesterday – 1 month checkup – and now he says I have a good deal of astigmatism in both eyes which developed during the healing process and it’s hindering my ability to see distance. He said to continue with the prednisolone (steroid) and the Refresh eye drops (preservative free) – and hopefully it’s all corrected by the next appt date – Oct 19th – the 3 month check-up. If it’s not stabilized by then – he said we could go in and tweak it again. Ugh. This is VERY discouraging since at least I was always farsighted! I play a lot of tennis – but not since this whole process began – which is a huge disappointment. And when I do play – I haven’t been able to play as I always have. I’m having trouble with double vision (which ball should I hit) and can’t handle much pace as my reaction time is so much slower cause I can’t see what’s coming at me! i find it all a bit depressing.

    I’m going to double up on the Refresh drops – and make sure to not miss a dose of the steroid drops – and REALLY hoping my eyesight will stabilize well before the 3 month mark. After reading all these other entries – I want to believe that like the others on the “other side” of this – I can one day say – This was worth it” – BUT – right now – I’m not there yet.

    • Hi Kathleen

      It really is a frustrating process… Not at all what I expected.. For you I would also suggest taking Omega 3 fish oil, maybe ask your Dr about that it can help with dry eyes and the healing and also Vitamin C helps.

      As far as my experience goes……..

      I had surgery on April 21st and I am now seeing the Dr every 3 weeks as we are waiting for my eyes to stabilize. They are still healing… I’m 46 so not sure if that has anything to do with how fast I heal… I have to use reading glasses. I see pretty well long distance, but I have a big issue close up. Which is ironic as I was -7 in both eyes pre surgery.. So I will be having what they call a ‘touch up’ not sure when but my Dr is committed to getting me to the best place possible when the time is right. My eyes have improved but it has been the slowest progress I have ever know so all I can say to anyone is be patient… well at least try….

  26. I had my PRK surgery on Aug 30 so 3 weeks tomorrow. Before surgery I was -8 in left and -7.5 in right with slight astigmatism in both. I don’t have any halos or double vision but I am extremely blurry still. Had a checkup last week and tested at 20/60. Dr said that is normal and that I am still healing. I was using preservative-free drops at least once per hour. Dr decided to inser punctal plugs to help with the dryness. Since then I haven’t had to use as many drops. My best vision was on day 13 — I think I was 20/30 all day and it felt amazing but since then everything is still blurry. I can read crystal clear about a foot away but anything further then that is blurry. Dr said all normal and said once I am done with the steroid drops (another 2 weeks) that’s when the vision should start stabilizing but I should see the best vision to date around 3 month mark. I am still nervous and keep praying that all is hoing well and that the doctor is right. It is very hard to have the constant fuzziness especially working at a computer all day. I will do another post in a couple weeks after I’m done w the drops. Keeing my fingers crossed that my vision will improve.

  27. Hi everyone,
    I had PRK 15 days ago and counting.

    I had LASIK back in the early 2000s and no surgeon would do another LASIK procedure because they didn’t know how deep the old flap was. I had PRK in my left eye about seven years ago with no issues and I was able to see three days after.

    This other eye is another story. I only had a -1.25 with slight astigmatism to begin with. I had my surgery because glasses drive me crazy walking in the rain around New York and so on. Now I am worried and regretting it!

    I cannot see distance or close up really at all. My optometrist (the surgeon in my case does not do follow-ups, only the optometrist) he has said that the epithelial cells are still bumpy and the cornea is bumpy and it is an “unusually long recovery for in low-grade original problem” which obviously has me concerned.

    I had the contact lens bandage out at four days because the surgeons assistant said my eyes had healed fine. So slow healing doesn’t seem to be my issue?

    The optometrist seems concerned but the surgeon said to call him if I can’t see at three weeks.

    My vision was “worse than 20/50” And the “corneal topography is a mess”. Those are quotes from my optometrist from the day 13 appointment.

    All images near and far are very blurry and have two or three versions of them, significant ghosting. When I wake up in the morning I do have pretty bad dry and I’m using ointment at night time as suggested by the optometrist.

    Haven’t been able to drive since the start of this (my daughter is not thrilled being picked up by an Uber every day at school) and I’m very concerned that there is something else happening, or they may need to scrape the epithelial cells and start over.

    Would appreciate any thoughts.

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