Keratoplasty Eye Surgery (ALK)

1 What is a Keratoplasty Eye Surgery (ALK)?

Automated lamellar keratoplasty eye surgery (ALK), is a surgical procedure used to correct vision in people with severe nearsightedness and mild degrees of farsightedness.

On the day of surgery, the patient must bring their glasses to the surgery so the prescription can be reviewed. Also, the contact lenses shouldn't be worn for at least three days prior to keratoplasty eye surgery.

The patient should eat a light meal before going to the doctor and take all prescribed medications. If the patient does not feel well that morning, he/she must call the doctor's office to determine whether the keratoplasty eye surgery needs to be postponed.

ALK is performed under local anesthesia and usually takes less than an hour to complete. A cutting device is used to separate a thin layer of the cornea and create a flap.

The flap is then folded back and another, very precise cut is made on the sublayer of tissue based on the person's glasses' prescription. After this cut, the corneal flap is placed back over the eye where it attaches.

The healing time from keratoplasty eye surgery is very rapid and it usually takes only about 24 hours to mend. It may take a few weeks for patient vision to finally stabilize. The doctor will give the patient eye drops to control inflammation, discomfort, and prevent infection.

The advantages to another vision repair surgeries are the healing process for keratoplasty eye surgery is relatively quick, it takes less time for stable vision to return and recovery period is more comfortable.

The disadvantages of keratoplasty eye surgery are for people with mild to moderate nearsightedness, because keratoplasty eye surgery is not as accurate as other eye procedures, meaning that its outcome is more difficult to predict. Keratoplasty eye surgery slightly increases a person's risk of developing irregular astigmatism.

Potential side effects of keratoplasty eye surgery are glared, inability to wear contacts, sometimes permanently, infection and corneal scarring.

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