JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Combined PRK and PTK in myopic patients with recurrent corneal erosion.

AIM: To study the results of combined photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) and phototherapeutic keratectomy (PTK) in myopic patients with recalcitrant recurrent corneal erosion.

METHODS: PRK was performed in 16 eyes with the Visx 20/20 excimer laser at a central 6.0 mm zone, following total epithelial scraping. Subsequently, confluent 3.0 mm zones of PTK were ablated at a depth of 6.0 microns, surrounding the zone of PRK. The follow up period ranged from 26 to 42 months.

RESULTS: Complete alleviation of symptoms was demonstrated and there was no recurrence of corneal erosion. Visual acuity (VA) improved slowly following treatment, with a final uncorrected VA ranging between 6/9 and 6/12. A final myopic spherical equivalent < or = -1.0 D was found in 14 out of 16 eyes.

CONCLUSIONS: A combination of PRK and PTK is effective in the alleviation of symptoms and prevention of recurrences of corneal erosion. It is suggested that recalcitrant recurrent corneal erosion is a diffuse disease, although it often manifests as a local problem, and therefore extensive excimer laser ablation is required to prevent recurrence and to alleviate symptoms completely.

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