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PRK Eye Surgery for Presbyopia (Age-Related Farsightedness) in Chicago, IL

There are some people who go their entire lives without needing any type of corrective lenses. Then, as they get into their 40s and 50s, they start to notice that their near vision becomes blurry. This decrease in vision is known as presbyopia, or age-related farsightedness. As reading vision starts to blur, people ask themselves if corrective eye surgery for presbyopia is a viable option. Located in the heart of downtown Chicago, Dr. Colman Kraff is one of the country’s most experienced and skilled surgeons for treating presbyopia.

What Is Presbyopia

There are four types of refractive errors: Myopia (nearsightedness), Hyperopia (farsightedness), Astigmatism, and Presbyopia (age-related farsightedness). Presbyopia is an aging eye condition in which our natural crystalline lens loses its ability to help us focus on near tasks.

Presbyopia Symptoms

Because of this inability to focus on near tasks, many people can experience the following symptoms:

  • Ocular strain
  • Headaches or Migraines 
  • Fatigue 
  • Blurred distance vision after reading
  • Need to increase lighting to see small font
  • Need to hold objects further away to see them
  • Need to increase font size on your phone, tablet, or computer
  • Need to wear reading glasses
  • Need to wear bi-focal glasses

Presbyopia Causes

Presbyopia results from the natural aging process of the eye. When someone holds an object close to them, the muscles that hold our lens into place adjust to help bring that image into focus. As we age, those muscles lose their flexibility and the lens becomes stiffer and harder. This results in our inability to see objects at a closer range. To accommodate, we must hold objects further away or start relying on corrective lenses.

Presbyopia Causes

How Can PRK Fix Presbyopia?

The frustration of having to rely on corrective lenses to see things up close leads many people to ask: “can eye surgery correct presbyopia?”
The short answer to this commonly asked question is, it depends. If a patient is only presbyopic, meaning they aren’t myopic or hyperopic as well, then PRK surgery may not be an option for them. However, in some cases a patient could be a candidate for monovision. With monovision, a surgeon can perform PRK in one eye for presbyopia. Treating just one eye can help patients maintain good distance and near vision. In some cases, both eyes will need to be treated, but your nondominant eye would be intentionally under-corrected. Since not everyone is a candidate for monovision, it’s best to come in for a consultation to see if PRK for presbyopia is an option for you.

PRK Presbyopia Correction Process

Corrective eye surgery for presbyopia is possible, however, it will depend greatly on your exact refractive error. If specific criteria are met, PRK for presbyopia may be a great option to help lessen your dependency on corrective lenses. Dr. Colman Kraff has spent more than three decades leading the field in PRK surgery and Presbyopia treatments.

Step 1 - Consultation

The first step on your journey to clearer vision is to come in for a complimentary, no-obligation, consultation. During this appointment, several sets of measurements will be taken to determine if surgery is a safe and effective option for you. During this exam, a Refractive Counselor will go over surgery options so that you have a thorough understanding of how PRK surgery works. You will also get an opportunity to meet with Dr. Kraff who will review all your specific measurements and discuss which options are right for you.
Dr. Kraff will also discuss whether monovision, where one eye is treated for near and the other set for distance, is an option. In some cases, both eyes will need to be treated to give patients their desired outcome. Please note that if you are presbyopic, with no other types of refractive error, then PRK may not be an option for you.

Step 2 - Pre-op

The measurements performed at your initial consultation are meant only as a screening evaluation to determine whether you fall within treatable parameters for surgery. If you are found to be a good candidate, then you will need to have a dilated preoperative exam prior to surgery. This appointment will require you to discontinue wearing contact lenses for one to two weeks leading up to this appointment. During your pre-operative period, specific and detailed measurements will be collected to help customize your surgery. This is done utilizing the iDesign 2.0 software. This software helps Dr. Kraff customize your surgery to treat your exact visual requirements. You will also be dilated at this exam so that Dr. Kraff can look at the internal structures of the eye and ensure that everything is healthy.

Step 3 - Surgery

PRK is a safe and effective procedure in which a LASER removes a microscopic amount of tissue from the cornea. By removing tissue, the light that passes through the eye can better focus on the retina. During the first step of surgery, Dr. Kraff will use an instrument to gently remove the surface layer of the cornea known as the epithelium. The epithelium is the quickest regenerative tissue in the human body. Once removed, the LASER, in a matter of seconds, will treat the exposed areas of the cornea. Upon completion, a soft bandage contact lens will be placed on the eye. PRK is a quick and painless procedure and is usually over within 15 minutes. During the procedure a patient will be given several sets of topical numbing eye drops in each eye to ensure pain-free comfort throughout the entire process. In addition, a small lid speculum will be inserted so that a patient cannot blink during surgery. Because their eyes are numb, a patient will not realize the lack of blinking. The laser will be programmed with each patient’s precise measurements collected during their preoperative exam.

Step 4 - Follow-Up and Recovery

Immediately following treatment, a patient will want to go home and rest. As well, patients are advised to limit activities including work, starting at a computer, heavy reading, driving, and exercising for the first two to three days. During those first couple of days, it is normal to have some discomfort, but oral pain medication can help minimize any discomfort. After approximately three days, enough of the epithelium should have regenerated so that the bandage lens can be safely removed and the patient can return to most of their normal daily activities. Throughout the first year, a patient will need to be seen for several follow-up visits to ensure visual stability.

Am I a Candidate for PRK Surgery for Presbyopia?

The best way to determine if eye surgery to correct presbyopia is a safe and effective treatment option is to come in for a consultation. Surgery depends greatly on a range of factors including your visual needs and eye condition. Consultations are done Monday through Friday during regular business hours. You will not be dilated during this initial exam so many patients can go back to work following their initial consultation.

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Financial Options

When you are here for your initial consultation, our Refractive Consultants will share the exact cost of your PRK procedure. The Kraff Eye Institute has partnered with CareCredit to provide patients with great financing options. Patients are also reminded that they can use FSA and HSA funds towards the cost of their PRK surgery.

Dr. Colman R. Kraff

About Your Doctor

Dr. Colman Kraff has devoted the past 30 years to helping patients see a clearer and better world. Dr. Kraff was a part of the original 1991 FDA clinical trials that helped PRK become FDA approved in this country. Dr. Kraff specializes in PRK presbyopia surgery among other state of the art corrective surgeries. Located in the heart of downtown Chicago, The Kraff Eye Institute is trusted by both local and out-of-town patients to receive accurate surgery options and the best treatments available.

FAQ

Does everyone get presbyopia?

Yes! Everyone at some point will start to develop presbyopia.

Am I going to be in pain during presbyopia laser surgery?

PRK surgery is a quick and painless procedure.

Is PRK the best choice for treating presbyopia?

This will depend on your exact refractive error. If you have only presbyopia, then PRK surgery may not be the option for you.

How much does PRK laser presbyopia surgery cost?

The average cost of PRK surgery is between $1800-$2800 per eye.

Schedule Consultation

To schedule a complimentary LASIK consultation, please click Schedule LASIK Consultation. To inquire about other services, please fill out the form below and we will reach out to you.
Please check with your insurance provider to see if our doctors are in your network.

Request a Consultation 312-444-1111
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