Surface laser eye surgery, also known as Photo Refractive Keratectomy (PRK), Trans-Epi PRK or LASEK, is the original laser eye surgery and has been available for over 30 years, with millions of patients permanently enjoying the results of clear vision. The treatment has dramatically evolved for increased precision, comfort and quality of vision.


What is Surface laser eye surgery?

Surface laser eye treatment is performed directly on the front of the eye.  It reshapes the cornea to alleviate the need for glasses and contact lenses.  These laser treatments can be specifically designed with the latest diagnostic equipment to correct vision and even regularise unusual shaped corneas.

The very front surface of the eye is called the epithelium and is a very thin, regenerating layer that protects the cornea. Once numbing eye drops have been applied, this eye is either prepared for laser vision correction treatment using a laser or performed manually:

Trans-Epi PRK – uses the laser to remove the epithelial layer initially, and then the laser continues to deliver the vision correction.

PRK and LASEK – the surgeon will soften the epithelial cells and gently remove them, either entirely or moving to one side before the laser delivers the pre-calculated vision correction.

Who is Surface treatment for?

This longstanding technique offers correction for short-sight, long-sight and astigmatism. Recommended for patients:

  • Over the age of 18 years old with a stable prescription
  • If you are not suitable for lenticular extraction or LASIK
  • Irregularly shaped or scarred corneas (due to previous eye infections or injuries)
  • Patients with thin corneas

When considering vision correction, you will need a detailed eye examination. This will ensure your suitability and advise the most appropriate option for your vision needs.

How is a Surface treatment performed?

Surface laser eye surgery is an outpatient procedure performed using one laser and takes around 20 minutes:

  1. Numbing the eye: anaesthesia drops are given to numb the eye. There are no needles or injections involved in laser eye surgery.
  2. Prepare the eye: the very top layer of the cornea is removed, typically with the laser.
  3. Laser treatment: the precalculated treatment is applied to the front of the eye.
  4. Bandaged contact lenses: a high water content contact lens is applied to the eye as a bandage to aid comfort.

Why is Surface treatment a good option?



Surface laser is a safe and successful procedure


No Flap

Surface treatments do not require a flap


Great Results

 Surface laser gives great results, with vision recovery in around 1 –2 weeks



 Surface laser offers customised corrections for complex corneas