Post-Operative Healing and Medications


Lt Col Reynolds
When the anesthetic drops wear off about 45 to 60 minutes after PRK surgery, the eyes may hurt moderately for three to five days. For LASIK patients, this initial discomfort is less severe and is often described as a “sandy sensation” in the eyes. Dr. Patel, can you tell us more about what to expect after refractive surgery?

Dr. Patel
Of course, Dr. Reynolds. The provider may prescribe pain medication to make the patient more comfortable during those first few days after surgery. Anti-inflammatory eye drops and lubricants may also be prescribed.

Patients should avoid rubbing their eyes after PRK and LASIK surgery. This will promote healing and decrease the risk of infection. It is never recommended for anyone to rub their eyes, but it’s especially important after PRK or LASIK.

After PRK or LASIK surgery, patients can expect to be mildly sensitive to light, and may have the feeling that something is in their eye for the first three to five days. Sunglasses may make them more comfortable during this time.

Vision should become stable within the first several days to weeks after surgery. Some patients, however, may experience small changes – slight improvement or worsening – in their vision for up to six months after surgery.

A haze or cloudiness may be seen in the cornea following surgery, but usually does not affect vision. This haze typically disappears over time, but some patients may continue to experience haze.