Epi-LASIK – LASIK Alternative Offered in Our Las Vegas Offices

Epi-LASIK is an alternative to LASIK eye surgery we perform that combines the techniques of both LASIK and LASEK surgery to improve a patient’s vision.

Epi-LASIK eye surgery is a refractive procedure aimed at minimizing the need for eyeglasses or contact lenses. It is an acronym that stands for Epithelial Laser-Assisted in situ Keratomileusis. Developed by IoannisPallikaris, the procedure applies both LASIK and LASEK techniques to draw on their respective strengths.

LASIK uses a laser or a sharp surgical blade to cut the flap. However, there is need for great precision to cut the optimal thickness without cutting a thick flap. LASEK involves the use of fine blades to cut epithelial skin as thinly as possible, retaining the hinge of the flap. An ophthalmologist loosens the flap with alcohol, which may lead to some adverse reactions.

How Epi-LASIK Eye Surgery Works

Although Epi-LASIK applies this latter method too, ophthalmologists use blunt plastic oscillating blades. Instead of alcohol, the eye doctor uses an epithelial separator.

The epithelial flap is lifted and folded to allow ophthalmologists to work on the cornea, which they reshape using an excimer laser. They then put the flap back in position and place a special contact lens to keep it in place as the eye heals.
Although patients will experience discomfort after surgery, they can use over-the-counter painkillers. The discomfort is relatively less compared to other procedures.

Post-op Care for Epi-Lasik

Once patients leave our Las Vegas clinic following the procedure, they are generally required to keep the contact lenses in place for three days, and only an eye doctor can permit them to remove the lenses. Patients can start driving after a week and their vision will continue to gradually improve.

Ideal Candidates for Epi-Lasik Surgery

Epi-LASIK eye surgery is recommended for patients with mild myopia and those whose corneas are not too steep. This is because it is challenging to create the epithelial flap if the cornea is too steep.

The procedure is also ideal for patients who do not have enough tissue for a flap, those with thin corneas and patients whose professions expose their eyes to the risk of trauma.