Surface Ablation or PRK (Photorefractive Keratectomy) was the first refractive laser corneal procedure performed for the correction of nearsightness (myopia), farsightness (hyperopia) and astigmatism.

In PRK the top thin layer of the cornea called the epithelium is removed. The cornea is then reshaped with the same laser (excimer laser) as the one used in LASIK to correct the eye prescription. A soft bandage contact lens is then placed on the eye to let the epithelium of the cornea heal in 3 to 5 days. The advantages of PRK are that there is no corneal flap created which plays an important role in very thin corneas and possibly less incidence of dry eye.