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Timeline and is PRK still preferred?

Chippewa19

Puts the cart before the horse
I wear glasses and my prescription is within the NAMI standards to get PRK or LASIK out of pocket. (-3.25, -3.0)

I am starting the application process for PLC-Air and I was planning on having the surgery this spring so I have a 6+ month window for everything to check out before MEPS and NAMI (and hopefully OCS)

1. Is PRK still the DoN preferred eye surgery? My eye doc's referral does both pretty frequently, my understanding is that LASIK has a faster recovery time but carries the risk that the epithelial flap can detach (an especially scary prospect considering pugil's, MCMAP, O course, etc at OCS and TBS), while PRK has a longer recovery time but has better long-term results and is typically more resilient.

2. Can I show up to MEPS with glasses/contacts and pass, or should I have everything already done and ready to go in case I need an adjustment before NAMI?

3. Both eyes at once or one at a time?
 

Scimitarze

Automated Member
LASIK is preferred over PRK now IIRC.

My OR said MEPS wouldn't even consider me until after my 6 month wait and postop paperwork in hand.

Yes, do both at once.
 
1. I'll defer to the answers that others provide regarding DoN prefferences, but anecdotal evidence I've personally gathered in the last 4 years talking to others who have had PRK or LASIK has led me to the conclusion that LASIK has been more popular. I've yet to meet anyone who has gotten LASIK but wish they had gotten PRK. I have, however, met a few people who got PRK but wish they had gotten LASIK (but mostly due to the longer and more painful recovery period). Again, this is just my personal observations on the matter.

LASIK has a faster recovery time but carries the risk that the epithelial flap can detach (an especially scary prospect considering pugil's, MCMAP, O course, etc at OCS and TBS)
This is why there's a recovery period.

3. Unless your given a good reason not to, do both eyes at once.
 

Spekkio

He bowls overhand.
1. I'll defer to the answers that others provide regarding DoN prefferences, but anecdotal evidence I've personally gathered in the last 4 years talking to others who have had PRK or LASIK has led me to the conclusion that LASIK has been more popular. I've yet to meet anyone who has gotten LASIK but wish they had gotten PRK. I have, however, met a few people who got PRK but wish they had gotten LASIK (but mostly due to the longer and more painful recovery period). Again, this is just my personal observations on the matter.

This is why there's a recovery period.

3. Unless your given a good reason not to, do both eyes at once.
I got Epi-Lasik (the more modern version of PRK). The main reason was because of the contours of my eye, the doc said that there was less risk with LASIK - not that he couldn't successfully do LASIK, but when it came to my vision and a doctor talking increased risk I wasn't about to go with LASIK.

But the other benefit of PRK/Epi-Lasik that my doc explained is that it's less risky to do touch-ups later in life. If your vision is so bad that you have to carve out your eye such that you can't to touchups regardless then this isn't an advantage, but I've got a few dozen more um I can lose if my vision starts to degrade again.

The flap scar tearing due to blunt trauma I think has mostly been debunked, but I'm not sure if all communities (namely SPECWAR) accept LASIK.
 

TAMR

Does this thing play Scotty Doesn't Know?
None
**Reviving an old thread but still relevant for others.

For what it's worth, I got LASIK through the Navy back in 2016 (was given the option of PRK or LASIK), and this year my flight doc said it no longer even requires an annual waiver submission.
 
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