TransPRK (No-Touch EpiLASIK) Surgery

Getting Vision Correction Surgery in Singapore?

Eye conditions such as myopia (short-sightedness) is a very common problem among Singaporeans that unfortunately starts for most people at a young age. Singapore is among the world leaders for the highest occurrence of myopia in children of ages seven to nine years. This could be due to many factors such as too much near vision use of the eyes, early use of interactive devices, poor visual lifestyle habits and genetics.

With such a high prevalence of myopia in Singapore, it is important for people to educate themselves on the various options available to treat this and other eye conditions besides glasses and contact lenses. Of all possible solutions, vision correction surgery (e.g. Soft-touch PRK, TransPRK, EpiLASIK, LASIK, SMILE, ICL etc.) offers a one-time and long-lasting effect that gives the myopic patient clearer vision without glasses.

What is TransPRK (TransEpiLASIK or No-touch EpiLASIK)?

TransPRK is a “no-touch” version of the PRK procedure. While in PRK, the outer layer of the cornea is removed by the use of alcohol or mechanical means, TransPRK (it has sometimes also been called TransEpiLASIK or No-touch EpiLASIK) removes this layer with the same laser which corrects the patient’s refractive error. Thereby transforming PRK into a one-step, no touch procedure. Doing this also speeds up and smoothens the healing process as compared to conventional PRK. TransPRK has the same indications as Soft-touch PRK and its results are comparable with that of LASIK and other versions of PRK/ Advanced Surface Ablation procedures.

TransPRK Procedure

Step 1:

The Schwind Amaris laser gently ablates the surface epithelium cells.

transPRK_step1

Step 2:

Reshaping the cornea curvature to correct the patient’s myopia.

transPRK_step2

Step 3:

Cornea epithelium regenerates itself in 3 – 5 days with the help of the ‘bandage’ soft lens which acts as an artificial flap.

transPRK_step3

Who is suitable for TransPRK?

TransPRK (it has sometimes also been called TransEpiLASIK or No-touch EpiLASIK) is for people who suffer from refractive errors but who have corneas that may not be suitable for LASIK. It is also for people whose jobs or sports put them at risk of eye trauma. The long-term visual outcome of TransPRK is comparable to LASIK but the recovery period is longer.

You will need to go through a comprehensive pre-procedure assessment, where the Optometrists and Ophthalmologist will check your eyes thoroughly in order to determine your suitability for TransPRK Surgery. Here are some factors to determine your suitability:

  • Has your vision been stable long enough to have TransPRK Surgery?
    If your spectacle power is still increasing, it would be advisable to wait till it stabilises.
  • What is your corneal shape and corneal thickness?
    Patients that have evidence of Keratoconus (coned shaped cornea) are not suitable for TransPRK. This is a condition where the cornea becomes thinned out and weakened causing unusual astigmatism and poor vision. In these cases, Implantable Collamer Lens (ICL) would be a better/safer option.
  • Are you currently pregnant or breastfeeding?
    Hormonal changes, change in corneal tissue properties and fluid retention can cause vision fluctuations of a woman who is pregnant or currently nursing. To have the best results for TransPRK and other types of vision correction surgery, it is advisable to undergo the procedure at a time when a woman is neither pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Do you have dry eyes?
    If you have an existing condition of dry eyes, you may be advised to have that treated prior to vision correction surgery (e.g. TransPRK, PRK, LASIK etc.) – since the quality and the quantity of tears you produce are factors in the development of dry eyes and can also affect healing after eye surgery.

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