LASEK Laser Eye Surgery

Also known as PRK or LASEK, Advanced Surface Ablation is an incisionless procedure with vision restored within 1-3 days. Book a consultation today and find out if you’re suitable.

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What is Advanced Surface Ablation / LASEK eye surgery?

Advanced Surface Ablation (ASA) also known as LASEK eye surgery, is a less frequently performed laser vision correction procedure and can be used to correct myopia (short-sight), hyperopia (long-sight), astigmatism and presbyopia, the age-related requirement for reading spectacles within certain limits of correction. 

ASA, LASEK and PRK (photorefractive keratectomy) are similar procedures in which no flap or lenticule are created in the cornea, but the excimer laser treatment is applied to the surface of the cornea after the thin surface coat called the epithelium is removed. 

The epithelium is the waterproof, infection resistant barrier to the cornea and is constantly renewing itself throughout life, a scratch to the surface of the cornea can heal within hours and when removed completely, the epithelium will usually take around 4 days to fully resurface. 

In PRK the epithelium is removed completely but in LASEK it is pushed to one side then replaced. Both treatments have the same visual outcomes but one may be preferred given the particular circumstances of the treatment. PRK was the first excimer laser procedure performed to correct refractive error and has been in constant evolution over 30 years.

Once the epithelium is painlessly removed, the shape of the cornea can be changed microscopically using the Mel® 90 excimer laser which corrects the refractive error in the same way as it is during LASIK.

ASA is usually performed when the cornea is too thin to support LASIK, where occupational injury is a risk or when it can be combined with therapeutic treatments such as PTK or CXL as part of Athens Protocol treatments for Keratoconus. 

Refractive LASEK / PRK Laser Eye Surgery Animation

Your ASA / LASEK procedure explained

Refractive LASEK Laser Eye Surgery Animation

On the day you come into the Anderson Eye Care clinic we will run through the procedure again with you so that you will be reassured about the steps. Allow 2-3 hours to be at the hospital so that you have plenty of time. Like SMILE® and LASIK, ASA is not painful and takes around 5-10 minutes per eye to complete, you will be in the laser room itself for around 20-30 minutes and will have a nurse with you throughout.

We will apply drops to numb your eyes and cover the eye that is not being treated. A small device is used to prevent the eye being treated from blinking although it will feel to you as if you are blinking normally.

The couch will glide to the Mel® 90 excimer laser and you will be asked to look at a green flashing fixation light. A small well of fluid will be placed on the surface of your eye for 30 – 40 seconds and you vision will be slightly blurry but you will not feel anything.

This will be removed and the epithelium brushed back. You will hear but not see the excimer laser which will change the shape of the cornea and after eyedrops are applied at the completion of treatment a contact lens will be placed to minimise any post-operative discomfort. 

The entire procedure is painless, although a feeling of pressure on the eyes may be noticed at times. Similar to LASIK, it typically lasts 5-10 minutes for each eye and around 30 minutes for the whole procedure.

After anaesthetic drops are given to numb the eyes you will be taken to the treatment room and asked to lay on the bed. A lid speculum is applied to keep your eyes open and to stop you from blinking. The surgeon firstly removes the corneal epithelium usually with the assistance of a dilute alcohol solution that weakens the attachments of the epithelium. Then the excimer laser is used to resculpt your cornea. A protective contact lens is finally placed on the eye to minimize post-operative discomfort and assist healing.

LASEK Surgery Aftercare

After LASEK surgery, you will rest for a short period and be provided with refreshments before going home. Your eyes will feel gritty and will be sensitive to light so we recommend that you bring (non-prescription) sunglasses with you. 

We will provide you with antibiotic and anti-inflammatory drops to use as well as pain relief and a reminder of your does and don’t instructions. We ask you to be careful not to rub or touch your eyes and to avoid showering or getting tap water into your eyes for the next few days until your first post-operative review and will provide you with some comfortable eye protection to wear overnight. 


You will be able to see immediately after treatment is completed and you sit up although your vision will be blurry. We suggest that you arrange transport home from the hospital.

In contrast to SMILE® and LASIK you will experience more grittiness, discomfort and light sensitivity and your vision will fluctuate more but the final visual outcome will be the same so although you will recover more slowly the outcome of your treatment will not be inferior. ASA treatments can also be combined with therapeutic treatments such as PTK and also treatments to stabilize the cornea such as corneal collagen cross linking (CXL) as part of an Athens Protocol Treatment. 


We will invite you back for a check-up within the next few and then again at intervals thereafter, typically 1-2 weeks then at 3 months and 1 year. You can return to normal activities such as exercise and swimming after a few weeks but we can advise you specifically about any activity you wish to resume. 

5-Star Laser Eye Surgery Reviews

Gift of Sight
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Having had laser correction carried out by Mr Anderson, I can honestly say it was the best choice I could of made. Mr Anderson explained the procedure clearly and answered all my questions. I was feeling anxious in the last week prior to my surgery, but once I had seen Mr Anderson the day before my surgery, he put me at ease. A modern day miracle, thank you for giving me my sight back and changing my life!!
No more glasses! Thanks Mr Anderson.
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I had LASIK (laser eye surgery) performed in October 2014 by Mr Anderson. Throughout the whole journey, pre operative and post operative, he has been kind caring and professional. Nothing is too much trouble, even any niggling concerns I have had, he has been right on hand to be able to advise me further.
The best decision I ever made
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After years of mucking about with glasses and contacts, I got LASEK from Anderson Eye Care. First, I can see perfectly. As a competitive rugby player, I expose my eyes to a fair bit of abuse (tackles, mud, etc.) and I have not had a single trouble with my eyes since the surgery. The experience itself was professional and comfortable, and Dr. Anderson gave me clear and helpful advice. Having done it, it is amazing to me that anybody would still choose to wear contacts or glasses.
Fantastic attention to detail
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I was a patient of David's having laser eye surgery and am now a colleague of his. I can highly recommend David. He is a skilful surgeon and is naturally a details person. He gives truly bespoke solutions for refractive surgery.
Dr Bram
Brilliant surgeon, fantastic care
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I had LASEK eye surgery to correct significant amblyopia. Mr Anderson was thorough and reassuring. I always felt in good hands and the aftercare I received was excellent. I would strongly recommend this surgeon and his team for the excellent quality of service and the brilliant care and results that I received.
Ms H
Thank you Mr. Anderson.
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It is a daunting experience and most peculiar sensation having eye surgery. However if all surgeons and teams are as good and caring as Anderson Eye Care we can be assured of a pain free and quite amazing result. My eye sight was particularly poor and I now see better than ever in my life. My local optician said it was the best result he had ever seen. I felt reassured and safe through the whole experience.
Great experience of Lasik
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Great experience from initial consultation through to actual procedure. Nothing was too much trouble and all questions / queries / concerns were answered in a very clear and simple way. David and his support staff of nurses and opticians were excellent. I would have zero hesitation in recommending David to friends / colleagues.
Laser eye surgery - excellent service, would highly recommend
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I underwent LASEK laser eye surgery from David Anderson nearly 5 months ago. The service really was superb from start to finish. David is clearly highly skilled at what he does and I felt completely at ease throughout the process. I experienced minimal discomfort both during and after the procedure and I am extremely pleased with the results. I would definitely recommend David to anyone that is considering undergoing laser eye surgery.

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