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Post PRK Corneal Swelling
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Post PRK Corneal Swelling

I had PRK corrective surgery on 10/24.  On 10/26 I inadvertently rubbed my eye and tore up my epithelium rather substantially.  On that day, my post-op provider removed my bandage contact lens and sent me home to heal with an appointment the next day to have another lens placed in that eye, with the hope that the epithelium would sort itself out and be more suited to have a lens placed over it.  The next day, 10/27, the doctor was much happier with what he saw in the slit lamp, and put a new lens on my eye.  

So, today 10/30 I returned to the doctor and he says that the blurred, greasy vision I am experiencing in my compromised eye is due to corneal swelling resulting from the damage that I inflicted on my eye.  He was very vague about the healing process and I am worried about how long it may take for the swelling to come down and allow my vision to normalize.  Am I looking at days, weeks, months, years?   Are salt-rich eyedrops advisable post-PRK?  How high is the risk that corneal edema will affect my PRK results?  

Any help, advice, or direction would be greatly appreciated.
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Dear klondike5,

The epithelium can take some time to heal following PRK.  It takes time for the proteins which cause adhesion of the front layer to the underlying layer.   It is likely that the visual recovery will be delayed but eventually, the epithelium should heal.  Salt drops reduce the swelling of the epithelial layer and the elevation.

Dr. Feldman

Sandy T. Feldman, M.D., M.S.
ClearView Eye and Laser Medical Center
San Diego, California
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