This is a review on my experience with Custom Wavefront PRK.
I wanted to get Lasik surgery on my eyes as one of my goals this year. I set aside $5,000 in my flex spending account to cover the expense with pre-tax dollars. I did my research for the best lasik in Orange County. I knew that I wanted personalized attention and I did not want to go to a big shop where they herd you in like cattle and you don’t meet your surgeon until you’re under the
My research led me to the Chao Vision Institute in Irvine and I could not be happier with my decision–I truly believe he is one of the best lasik surgeons in Orange County.
I called to set up a consultation and I showed up on a Saturday morning–only Dr. Chao and his receptionist were working that day. He met with me personally and we decided that because of my large pupils and thin cornea, I would need Custom Wavefront PRK.
Custom Wavefront PRK is a different form of lasik, that involves scraping the outer skin of the eye (under anesthesia of course) rather than cutting, as with lasik.
Custom Wavefront PRK Procedure
The actual procedure took 15 minutes max from beginning to end, with me being under the laser about a minute total for each eye. It didn’t hurt at all, and while I was awake and able to see everything, I couldn’t feel anything.
Immediately after the procedure, I felt fine and also felt like I could see better than before although my vision was a bit hazy. In order for the eye to heal, they place a thick clear contact on your eye.
On the twenty-minute drive home (my husband drove) , I started to feel mild discomfort. By the time we got home, I needed to lay down and put an ice pack on my face. Anytime I tried to open my eyes, they would immediately start watering and burning. I’m not gonna lie–it hurt.
Throughout the day, Eric would place drops in my eyes as part of the recovery process. Unfortunately there wasn’t much I could do except lie down with my eyes closed and an ice pack over my eyes.
The first night, I woke up in the middle of the night with my eyes burning. I was crying from the pain. My husband had to get up and place drops in my eyes, plus a special Comfort Drop mixture prepared by the Chao Vision Institute. I ended up sleeping the rest of the night on the couch with the ice pack on my eyes to ease the pain.
Custom Wavefront PRK: Day 1 Recovery
The morning after surgery, I wanted to die. My eyes burned. Dr. Chao said it would feel like an eyelash in my eye, but it felt more like someone was peeling an onion in front of my eyes and would not relent. I went into the Chao Vision Institute for my first post-op appointment. He assured me the pain was normal. My eye vision, which had been 20/150, was now 20/50.
Custom Wavefront PRK has a longer recovery time–about 4 or 5 days–as opposed to Lasik, which is almost instant.
By that afternoon, my eyes were feeling unbelievably better and I was even able to watch nominal amounts of television. I still had to sleep with an icepack on my eyes.
Custom Wavefront PRK: Day 2-4 Recovery
By the third day after my surgery, I was much, much better. I would have nominal amounts of discomfort and would simply place the comfort drops in my eye to help with the pain. On Day 4, I went in for my second post-op appointment, and my vision was now 20/40. It was on this day that they took the bandage contacts out of my eyes. This felt great because those little things were annoying! It felt like there was something in your eye every time you blinked.
I am now almost four weeks post-surgery and had my third check-up appointment with Dr. Chao of the Chao Vision Institute in Orange County. My vision as of last week was 20/25 and I’m hoping I’ll be at 20/20 by my next check-up later this week.
Even though it was painful at times, I am SO happy that I got my surgery done–and more specifically, I am thrilled that I chose the Chao Vision Institute. I feel like I got the highest level of care available. His staff was SO nice and accommodating and Dr. Chao himself checked on me during all appointments. The cost of the surgery was all-inclusive–I didn’t pay anything extra for drops, or check-up appointments. And should I have any complications with my eyes in a few years, the touch-up surgery would be included in the price as well.
I can’t speak highly enough of Dr. Chao and his staff at the Chao Vision Institute and would totally recommend him if you were thinking of getting eye surgery.
I am still not completely used to the fact that I don’t need contacts or glasses. At night time, I still sometimes reach for the contact solution and the other night, Eric caught me poking at my eye trying to take my contact out–no joke! I have to remind myself I don’t need glasses and stop reaching for them. Last night, I finally threw out my last contact solution bottle.
I love my new eyes!
In accordance with FTC guidelines, I was not paid or received any form of compensation for this review. I am simply one super satisfied customer and wanted to give the Chao Vision Institute my highest recommendation.