Phillips Eye Institute and Minneapolis Eye Surgery

The mission of an eye institute is to prolong and protect the vision of local citizens by conducting and performing research into treating and preventing diseases that affect the eye or vision–this is the Phillips Eye Institute.

phillips eye institute

Phillips Eye Institute and eye surgery in Minneapolis

Claris Eye Care & Surgery is one of Minneapolis’s largest providers of vision and eye care services and we are committed to treating the eye care needs of patients of all ages. We are a unique ophthalmic specialty center that offers a united mission to help our patients address health concerns related to their eyes. Our uniquely placed offices- right next door to the Phillips Eye Institute- and our extensive services are all incorporated into a patient-focused care experience.

The Phillips Eye Institute

Dr. Carlson performs all eye surgery procedures exclusively at the highly specialized Phillips Eye Institute in Minnesota. From around the corner to around the world people come to the Phillips Eye Institute for an array of services, from diagnostic tests and vision rehabilitation to laser eye treatments and specialized laser eye surgery using the latest technology like the femtosecond laser.

Phillips Eye Institute, the product of a creative vision of many people put together, was designed to function as a freestanding eye specialty center associated with Mount Sinai Medical Center. Developed by and for ophthalmologists. The dream of this unique facility was realized in large part thanks to Jay Phillips who was the main benefactor of Mount Sinai Hospital and a strong supporter of Mount Sinai’s Division of Ophthalmology. It is because of his generous philanthropic support that The Phillips Eye Institute bears his name. Continue Reading…

Laser Eye Surgery With Claris

laser eye surgery

Laser Eye Surgery with Claris Eye Care & Surgery

A number of years ago, laser eye surgery used to seem like a last resort- something most people worried about and put off and therefore neglected. However, nowadays there is no stigma attached to needing laser eye surgery.  The advent of more efficient and modern techniques and technology have brought with them major clarity and the ability to work with laser precision.

Reflecting the growing popularity of laser eye surgery meant that even the language used for laser eye surgery had to change, as the term “surgery” is usually a little intimidating.  Surgeries are now called “Corrective Procedures” and among these remedies are treatments like LASIK, PRK, Visian ICL and many more, all under the umbrella of what is now called “laser vision correction.”

The dynamic field of laser eye surgery has brought Claris Eye Care & Surgery to the forefront of specialized medicine.  Our specialties are lasik, botox, glaucoma, cataracts, laser treatment, general eye care and so much more. We pay attention to every detail and clearly, at Claris, the most important detail is you. Continue Reading…

The Latest Advances in Laser Eye Surgery

If you are interested in having laser eye surgery in Minneapolis, there has never been a better time than right now. The latest advancements have made laser eye surgery more precise, efficient, and affordable than in years past, and Claris Eye Care & Surgery is here to help you see your way to a clearer future.

Although laser eye surgery was popularized around 15 years ago and considered a miraculous procedure even then, the newest techniques in modern medicine continue to
innovate providing new and exciting advancements. Today eye care specialists are relying on the efficacy and accuracy of this cutting edge technology. These beneficial advancements for laser eye surgery patients have made it one of the most popular surgical procedures in the United States.

Laser eye surgery refers to any surgical procedure used to correct vision problems. Refractive laser eye surgery is also called laser vision correction and refers to those procedures that correct poor vision due to nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. Some of these laser vision correction surgeries work by reshaping the cornea so that light traveling through it is properly focused onto the retina located in the back of the eye. Others involve replacing the eye’s natural lens. The three most common types of laser eye surgeries are called LASIKLASEK, and PRK.

Here are some of the areas of progression and advancement in the field of laser vision correction:

Wavefront Technology

advances in laser eye surgery

WaveFront Mapping for Laser Eye Surgery

Incredibly accurate pictures of the cornea can be taken by using light waves and mapping the corneal surface as the waves bounce back. This procedure, known as wavefront technology, can detect incredibly small imperfections allowing a surgeon to be even more precise. At the Claris Eye Care & Surgery in Minneapolis, LASIK, PRK and LASEK are performed with the addition of computer imaging called WaveScan®, a digital technology that identifies and measures imperfections in eyes 25 times more precisely than standard methods. Dr. Carlson utilizes the VISX STAR S4 IR laser, the most advanced laser technology platform available today. By integrating data collected by the WaveScan® Wavefront system, the STAR S4 IR utilizes exclusive VISX technology to deliver precise custom laser surgery. The powerful WaveScan® software then translates the information into a set of CustomVue® treatment instructions for the laser, driving a new level of precision and accuracy. Continue Reading…

Learning about LASIK Laser Eye Surgery

Have you been wondering about laser eye surgery lately? Any questions about LASIK specifically? Then you’ve come to the right place.

Understanding LASIK Vision Correction

Does LASIK stand for anything?

Yes, it is short for laser assisted in-situ keratomileusis.

What is LASIK surgery able to correct?

LASIK is appropriate for correcting poor vision due to the common problems of

These are known as refractive errors and are the result of imperfections in the eye due to eye length or the curvature of cornea or lens. These imperfections improperly bend light passing through the eye.

Exactly how does LASIK correct poor vision?

Laser eye surgery, such as LASIK, permanently reshapes the cornea (that clear top part of the eye). The changes made to the cornea bend and focus light  so that when it hits the retina you see properly.

During LASIK surgery, an ophthalmologist uses a laser to cut a large flap in the cornea to access the underlying tissue. A second laser is used to remove and reshape the underlying tissue. After the corrections have been made, the corneal flap is replaced.

What should I expect during or after LASIK surgery?

  • LASIK is performed while you’re awake.
  • Topically applied numbing eye drops are the only medication necessary.
  • The procedure is basically painless, but you may experience some pressure.
  • The LASIK procedure takes about 10 minutes per eye.
  • Dry eye is a common side effect.
  • Don’t expect to see perfectly right away. Eyes and vision may take some time to adjust.
  • Results may vary, especially for patients over 40. Follow-up treatments – or, enhancements – can improve and perfect vision outcomes.

Time to Schedule Your Minneapolis LASIK Consultation

Even though LASIK has become a fairly common procedure, you will first be given a complete eye exam to determine whether or not you are a LASIK candidate. Several reasons could rule out LASIK as a possibility. If LASIK is not suitable for you, don’t worry. LASIK isn’t your only laser vision correction option in Minneapolis as Claris’s Dr. Carlson is also certified to conduct LASEK and PRK laser eye surgeries.

Once you’re cleared to go, wavefront computer imaging technology will be used to create a detailed image of your cornea. At Claris Dr. Carlson uses WaveScan® technology to create a customized guide for the laser that is 25 times more precise than other standard measuring techniques.

After your LASIK procedure, you’ll stop by Claris for a few after-care visits. Your overall health and progress is important to monitor to be sure you’re getting the optimal results.

Do You Live in Minneapolis & Have More Questions about LASIK?

Claris Eye Care & Surgery in Minneapolis is the best place for your LASIK laser eye surgery needs. Dr. Carlson is one of the most experienced ophthalmologists in the country and has been at the forefront of laser vision correction. The entire Claris staff is knowledgeable and prepared to answer all your questions concerning LASIK eye surgery.

Enough reading already, Minneapolis! It’s now time to take action: Call Claris today at 612.775.8009 or email at

Aging Eyes & Laser Eye Surgery in Minneapolis

Are you in your 40s, 50s, or 60s? Have you found yourself squinting just to see clearly? As we age, poor vision may be something more than just the result of refractive errors, which are the cause of nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. We become more susceptible to developing cataracts, glaucoma, dry eye syndrome, and presbyopia. If you were considering laser eye surgery to correct any vision problems, these conditions may affect treatment options.

Aging Eyes and Laser Vision Correction

I’m over 40. Does my age affect the outcome of laser eye surgery?

No. Generally speaking, outcomes are similar, but older patients may need additional treatment to achieve optimal results.

I’ve become nearsighted. How do cataracts affect my laser vision correction options?

Cataracts are the clouding of the eye’s natural lens, and surgery may be required to replace your natural lens with an artificial one. Because cataracts can’t be prevented with laser refractive surgery, opting for cataract surgery over LASIK or other laser eye surgeries would be recommended.

If you had laser refractive surgery prior to being diagnosed with cataracts, knowing your prescription before and after laser vision correction is important for selecting a lens for cataract surgery.

I was considering laser eye surgery to correct my vision, but I also have glaucoma.

The severity of your glaucoma may determine if you are still a candidate for laser eye surgery. LASIK isn’t recommended in cases of moderate to severe glaucoma, but for mild glaucoma treated with a single medication, you may still be able to get laser vision correction.

Finding signs of glaucoma becomes more difficult after laser refractive surgery, so telling your ophthalmologist if you’ve had laser vision correction is important to avoid a missed diagnosis. Untreated glaucoma can lead to permanent damage and blindness.

What is presbyopia? Can laser eye surgery correct it and improve vision?

Presbyopia begins to naturally occur in your 40s and 50s. Eyes become more rigid and can’t as easily focus well on objects that are close up. Laser refractive surgery cannot prevent presbyopia, so even if you have laser eye surgery, you still may end up needing reading glasses.

One laser surgery option to address presbyopia requires one eye to be corrected for distance vision and the other eye for close-up tasks. While the combined effect resembles single vision, you may find it difficult to adjust to having eyes corrected for two different things. Multifocal lenses used in cataract surgery can correct presbyopia.

I suffer from dry eye syndrome. Can I still get laser eye surgery?

While some types of laser eye surgery aren’t completely ruled out, healing may be slower. Because LASIK requires cutting a corneal flap and dry eye is a common side effect, it isn’t recommended for anyone already suffering from severe dry eye.

 The Minneapolis Laser Eye Surgery Specialists

I think it’s time for an eye exam. Where can I go to ask about laser vision correction in Minneapolis?

Claris Eye Care & Surgery, located next door to Minneapolis’s renowned Phillips Eye Institute. For over 20 years, Claris’s Dr. Carlson has been performing laser vision correction in Minneapolis, helping patients with

The team at Claris Eye Care & Surgery in Minneapolis is equipped to assess your vision and fully inform you about any vision problems you may have due to the natural course of aging. If you’re interested in laser vision correction, Dr. Carlson or one of the ophthalmic nurses can discuss the different types of laser eye surgery with you and whether or not laser eye surgery can help.

Minneapolis laser vision correction and eye care is just a phone call away. Call 612.775.8009 to contact Claris today.

Computer Vision Syndrome: How Computers Affect Your Vision

In 2013 it is not unusual for people in the US to have at least one computer in their homes, but increasingly people, including children, have access to multiple digital devices, such as iPads, smartphones, and hand-held games. People spend many cumulative hours on these various devices for work or school, squinting down at cell phones to read text messages and emails or playing games.  A 2012 study by The Vision Council revealed over 30% of US adults reported using digital media or other electronic devices for 4-6 hours a day, with 14% approximately their use at 10-12 hours a day. All of this takes a toll on our eyes and vision.

We do not stop to think about what it takes for us to see the world around us. Every time we change where we look, our eyes move up, down, back, and forth. They have to refocus to create a clear image. A lot of little movements and adjustments must be made. Think about what you do at your desk. You look at the computer screen, then down at the papers on your desk, then back again. You do this for hours at a screen that is bright, flickers, and has a glare. Our eyes do a lot of work, and computers are compromising the quality of our vision.

Computer Vision Syndrome

What is it?

Computer vision syndrome (CVS), or digital eye strain, encompasses a group of eye and vision-related problems due to extended computer use. Symptoms manifest themselves as

  • Dry eyes,
  • Eye strain,
  • Blurred vision,
  • Headaches, and
  • Neck and shoulder pain

These symptoms are interrelated. As we squint to see more clearly, headaches can occur because we have strained our eyes. If we have to tilt our heads for a better viewing angle, we experience neck and shoulder pains that in turn can contribute to headaches.

What are the causes?

Much of computer vision syndrome is caused by the digital devices themselves as they pose high visual demands. Digital images and text are made up of tiny dots called pixels, and eyes must work hard in order to interpret all the colored dots and spaces between them. Other symptom sources from computers or workstations are

  • glare from screens,
  • bad lighting,
  • improper viewing distances, and
  • poor seating posture.

Sometimes computer vision syndrome symptoms can occur or be aggravated due to uncorrected vision issues – like nearsightedness, astigmatism, or changes due to aging known as presbyopia. Some people who already wear glasses or contacts for vision problems may still experience CVS discomfort if their prescriptions are not suitable for computer viewing.

CVS is a result of a combination of some or all of these issues. The effects of digital eye strain cause discomfort that increases throughout the day from prolonged use but are generally temporary, going away once computer use is discontinued. While the long-term effects are not yet known, some people continue to have reduced visual abilities or experience discomfort even after no longer working at a computer. In the case of uncorrected vision problems, reduced visual abilities may become a bigger problem.

Tips to Prevent Eye Strain

Taking care of your vision and preventing eye strain starts with good computer habits. Making a few adjustments to a computer work station can make all the difference. Ergonomic chairs, desks, keyboards, and computer stands that will put you at the proper height encourage proper posture, thereby eliminating the need to tilt your head, etc. You can also

  • Reduce glare by adjusting screen brightness or adding a protective screen over the monitor,
  • Change the background color of the display,
  • Keep the screen clean,
  • Dim the lighting around your PC,
  • Don’t sit too closely,
  • Position the screen slightly below eye level, and don’t tilt it, and
  • Increase the text size

Seeking Help and Vision Treatment in Minneapolis

Regular vision checks are important in order to monitor your eye health and to address any changes in your vision. So if you have done all you can to try to see your screen better but still have trouble, it is time to consider seeing an optometrist or ophthalmologist.

Glasses are a great, quick, and relatively inexpensive option and can be made to reduce the effects of computer glare. But if you already had glasses yet still find yourself having to squint or tilt your head in order to properly see your computer screen, you may need a second pair of glasses better suited for computer work. However, if you find you would like a more permanent solution to your vision problems, Dr. Carlson and his staff at Claris Eye Care & Surgery can discuss laser vision correction options with you and determine if you are good candidate for PRK, LASIK, or LASEK. Claris is fully equipped with the tools and an expert team to examine your eyes and diagnose any problems. Claris’s Dr. Keith Carlson, one of the region’s most experienced ophthalmologists, has been helping people from the Minneapolis area see better for nearly 20 years and specializes in laser eye surgery. In contacting Claris, you are on the way to relieving the pain of digital eye strain.

Minneapolis, Your Eye Care Experience Just Got Better

This is a fast-paced world, and time is very important to us. Every minute counts, so we try to be as efficient as possible. However, in the rush to try to get everything done, we sometimes forget to take a moment or two to take care of ourselves. But with such busy schedules, it can be difficult to remember to make an appointment to see a doctor or to refill a prescription. At Claris Eye Care & Surgery in Minneapolis, eye care is taken seriously, and now they are making it easier for you to make your eye health a priority, too.laser eye surgery minneapolis

Doctor visits can take a lot of time – from the phone call to schedule an appointment, to filling out forms upon arrival, then waiting in an exam room for a nurse or doctor to finally come. The result is that we might end up putting off our next visit because we feel it is all too much of a hassle. This is one of the reasons Dr. Keith Carlson established Claris Eye Care & Surgery in 2009 with the aim of being centered on patients while also providing them with the best vision care. In order to put patient care first, Claris committed to reducing wait times, using electronic medical records to streamline operations and provide greater transparency, and communicating with their patients in a timely manner.

In a world where we can access banking and credit card accounts, pay bills, shop, and – heck – even order pizza online, why shouldn’t the same be true of our medical experience? While electronic medical records and online patient access aren’t new to Claris, your Claris experience has just gotten better. How so? As part of the Claris commitment to patient care, the team strives to improve the process whenever and wherever possible. Therefore, starting March 2014 a new patient portal – Intelichart – will replace the current system adding value to you as the patient and to Claris as your eye care provider. How will InteliChart help you?

With InteliChart, you will be able to go online to schedule your own appointments whenever you happen to have a minute to spare – even if that happens to be at midnight. You will also be able to easily and securely access your medical profile, receive and pay bills, see past records, and communicate with Dr. Carlson and the Claris team. InteliChart will notify them of any changes you make to your profile or messages you send, so that they can respond to you quickly – and you no longer have to wait while on hold for answer. And to help you remember, email or text message reminders let you know about your Claris appointment. Ok – yes, some of this can be done with the current system, but InteliChart brings it all together and gives you – the patient – the power of information simply by logging on to your computer. InteliChart may also aid with overall increased efficiency at Claris. This means a lot of time saved for Claris and for you.

From Eye Exams to Laser Vision Correction

Your team at Claris won’t be wasting that extra time: they will be using it to better serve patients. Our fifth exam room is equipped and ready, and a new technician will be joining the Claris team this month. More patients can be seen at once, plus receive the benefits of shorter, faster visits – whether they are there for an annual eye exam, a laser vision correction consultation,  or a post-op checkup after PRK, LASIK, LASEK, cataract, or glaucoma surgery.

Eye care is something we should all take time to do. Find an extra minute to schedule an appointment today or contact Claris to discover how close you are to better vision and a clearer future. Of course, all this technology doesn’t mean one of Claris’s incredible staff members won’t be there to answer the phone whenever you need to talk to someone. Call 612.775.8009 today. Don’t waste any more time putting off your next appointment.

Laser Eye Surgery in Minneapolis: Seeing things clearly with Claris

Thanks to the extraordinary success rate with laser eye surgery at Claris Eye Care & Surgery, a multitude of patients report seeing things more clearly than they have at any other time in their lives. Dr. Carlson is a prominent and sought after eye surgeon and has proven to be the best possible choice for laser eye surgery in Minneapolis.

Laser eye surgery refers to any surgical procedure used to correct vision problems. In recent years, tremendous advancements have been made in the field of laser eye surgery- also called laser vision correction or “refractive” laser eye surgery. Due to it’s popularity more eye care specialists are relying on the efficacy and accuracy of this cutting edge technology.

Some of the vision correction surgeries work by reshaping the cornea so that light traveling through it is properly focused onto the retina located in the back of the eye. The three most mainstream types of laser eye surgeries are called LASIKLASEK, and PRK.

LASIK: LASIK is short for “laser in-situ keratomileusis”. This kind of laser eye surgery is used to correct vision in people who are nearsighted, farsighted, and/or have astigmatism. During LASIK surgery, vision is corrected by reshaping underlying corneal tissue so that it can properly focus light into the eye and onto the retina. How it differs from other surgeries is in the flap that is made in the outer layer of the cornea so that the underlying tissue can be accessed.

PRK: PRK is short for “photorefractive keratectomy”. This kind of laser eye surgery is also used to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, and/or astigmatism – mild to moderate cases. During PRK surgery, an eye surgeon uses a laser to reshape the cornea. This particular laser, which delivers a cool pulsing beam of ultraviolet light, is used on the surface of the cornea, not underneath a flap of the cornea, like in LASIK eye surgery.

LASEK: LASEK is short for “laser epithelial keratomileusis”, and is a variant of PRK. Once again, it is used to treat nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. Epithelial cells are loosened using an alcohol solution. A laser is used to reshape the cornea, then the cells are replaced and secured with a soft contact lens while it heals.

At the Claris Eye Care & Surgery in Minnesota, LASIK, PRK and LASEK is performed with the addition of computer imaging called WaveScan or “wavefront technology” which creates a detailed image of the cornea and guide for surgical treatment.

Dr. Carlson utilizes the VISX STAR S4 IR laser- representing the most advanced laser technology platform available today. By integrating data collected by the WaveScan® Wavefront system, the STAR S4 IR utilizes exclusive VISX technology to deliver precision custom laser surgery. The WaveScan® based digital technology identifies and measures imperfections in your eyes 25 times more precisely than standard methods. The powerful WaveScan® software then translates the information into a set of CustomVue® treatment instructions for the laser, driving a new level of precision and accuracy.

Where your surgery is performed is just as important as the quality of the technology used. Dr. Carlson performs all procedures exclusively at the highly specialized Phillips Eye Institute in Minnesota. People from a five-state region come to the Phillips Eye Institute for an array of services, from diagnostic tests and vision rehabilitation to laser eye treatments and specialized eye surgery.

When it comes to improving your vision -and see everything in life more clearly!, Dr Carlson is your best possible choice for laser eye surgery in Minneapolis.

Look Out Minnesota! At Claris, LASIK is better than ever

In Minneapolis, for the best quality eye care, the best customer service and the top eye surgeon in the state of Minnesota for LASIK, you need not look any further- Claris Eye Care & Surgery stands alone.

Thanks to the Internet and readily available information at our fingertips, we can now research the best possible person to go to for all of our health needs and issues. Look up Dr. Carlson and Claris Eye Care & Surgery and you will see numerous accreditations, amazing referrals and background information pertaining to why Claris is the best choice for LASIK in Minneapolis.

LASIK With Dr. Keith Carlson

Recently a friend who lives in the northwest region of the U.S. asked me if I knew of a trusted, qualified and experienced LASIK surgeon I could recommend. I said of course, Dr. Keith Carlson is highly recognized as one of the best!

After going online and spending probably too much time obsessing, (the internet is great for that), my friend called me back and said Dr.Keith Carlson - minneapolis, st. paul lasik eye surgeon“ Wow, Dr. Carlson and Claris is hands down looking like the best place for me to go for my LASIK”.

Dr. Keith Carlson created his own practice, Claris Eye Care & Surgery, to bring a renewed focus on patient needs and care. Since it’s inception, every day, every step has been taken to insure they follow through in their mission to “ Improve Vision and Promote Healing”.

What brings loyal patients and referrals in to Claris is the incredible training, experience, accomplishments, and accolades of Dr. Keith Carlson. For nearly 20 years, thousands of patients have trusted Dr. Carlson with their eyes. He is a Mayo Clinic trained and board-certified ophthalmologist. Dr. Carlson was among the first to work in laser vision correction, having begun before the opening of today’s mega-surgery centers. He is one of the most highly experienced vision correction specialists in the region. Thousands of pairs of Minnesota eyes see better today because of his abilities. Dr. Carlson holds a long list of certifications, including LASIK, LASEK, VISX, Custom Wavefront Laser Vision Correction, and small incision multi-focal intraocular lens surgery with ReSTOR and ReZoom IOLs.

The Best LASIK At Claris

Why choose LASIK at Claris? One of the many features that makes Claris the best choice for LASIK in the Minneapolis/ St. Paul region is the VISX STAR S4 IR- the most advanced laser technology available today. Used exclusively at Phillips Eye Institute, this Wave Scan based digital technology identifies and measures imperfections in your eyes 25 times more precisely than standard methods.

Wondering how to make LASIK an affordable option? Money shouldn’t be the reason you’re putting off having the iLASIK Procedure. Always look at what is included in the price and the reputation of the doctor and medical facility.  At Claris, you are getting the most experienced, technologically advanced and fully inclusive care in the Minneapolis & St. Paul area. Financing is available, and NOW you can also see better and save money. Here’s how:

  • Claris Eye Care and Surgery can help you with financing through Care Credit, and many times the payments can be as low as $93 a month (*Based on $3.900 fees at 14.9% APR over 60 months.)
  • When we surveyed consumers, they admitted that they were confused about the pricing of laser vision correction surgery; what’s more, they were suspicious about advertisements that touted “on sale” LASIK.
  • A few facts about the iLASIK Procedure:
    • A customized procedure as advanced as the iLASIK Procedure typically cannot be done for $500
    • Your iLASIK Procedure fees will typically range between $2,000 to $3,000 per eye, or on average $5,000 per individual
    • This price usually includes all of the pre-surgery evaluation and post-surgery follow-up exams

Like CLARIS EYE CARE & SURGERY on FB, follow them on Twitter or review them on Yelp & receive $200 off per eye on Laser Vision Correction!

(Allina employee discount, save $500 per eye on LVC; Military and MERSC Employees discount, save $300 per eye on LVC)

ADDED BONUS!!! Share your experience on Yelp for Claris Eye Care and surgery you can win a $50 gift card at the end of August.

The reviews are in and with 100% patient satisfaction

For convenience, comfort and better vision, call Claris today to find out about the best LASIK in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. At Claris, your choice is 612.775.8009.

PRK at Claris: Making Back To Basics Better

Being one of the best PRK doctors in Minneapolis requires a lot of experience and clearly, a lot of faith in the benefits of PRK… The benefits of PRK over it’s previously more popular step-sister, Lasik

PRK laser eye surgery | minneapolis, st. paul laser vision correctionIt is a little known fact that PRK is actually the predecessor to Lasik and was the first type of laser eye surgery for vision correction. Improvements in laser technology in the last decade have benefited PRK- meaning that more patients are feeling better and having better visual results with PRK than with Lasik. At Claris, Dr. Carlson performs countless PRK surgeries a year. It was comforting to find out that PRK eye surgery is actually an ambulatory procedure (which means you walk-in, walk-out the same day), done right next door to Claris at the renowned Phillips Eye Institute …. And, that the actual surgery itself takes only 15 minutes!

Ok, here’s the nitty gritty:

PRK stands for photorefractive keractomy and is a type of refractive surgery used to correct astigmatism, nearsightedness and farsightedness.

PRK works by reshaping the cornea using an excimer laser – which in translation means a short wave ultra violet light allowed to enter the eye, focused onto the retina, to vaporize and remove tissue from the eyes surface- the cornea. The remaining underlying corneal tissue is called the residual stromal bed. The main way that PRK differs from Lasik is that during Lasik a hinged flap is created on the cornea to accessPRK laser eye surgery | minneapolis, st. paul laser vision correction treatment area, and in PRK the cornea’s entire epithelial (outer) layer is removed to expose the treatment area, with no flap.

Initially the complaint about PRK was that the recovery time is too slow. It takes a few days for the epithelial cells to regenerate and cover the surface of the eye. And even though Lasik has a faster recovery period, a few of it’s shortcomings have come to light (pun intended), namely there have been complaints about night vision & the quality of vision. However, with the improvements in laser technology, PRK now allows the surgeon to leave a smoother stromal bed after surgery, with improved quality of vision and reduced formation of haze (another initial complaint about PRK). Most surgeons are applying mitomycin C for several seconds after surgery nowadays, to prevent haze after the healing period.

There are certain people who would be very attractive candidates, and would find PRK especially useful. These would be patients with:

  • Thin corneas
  • Large pupils
  • Corneal scars

If you are a possible candidate and are considering PRK, here are a few helpful Pre and Post- operative keys to success to keep in mind:

Preop- Careful preoperative care is crucial in helping to speed epithelial healing. Patients with Blepharitis should treat with lid hygiene, antibiotics & scribs.

Patients with dry eye should use artificial tears, Restasis, ointments or punctual plugs. In some cases, a dose of steroids just before surgery and quickly tapering over the days after can help with inflammation and pain.

Postop– The crucial point for epithelial healing and for reducing pain here is that the contact lens placed after surgery fits correctly.

Do not overuse anesthetic eye drops after surgery, this can delay healing time.

Decreasing inflammation in the eye is vital to speed healing- but it’s important to use with caution.

Think it’s time for a little PRK today?

The most important decision you will make is choosing the best eye surgeon with the most experience in PRK. And for that you need not look any further. Consistent patient feedback is that Dr. Carlson is the best eye surgeon for PRK!! Dr. Carlson, who was not only voted “Top Doc” again this year, but who has also been performing PRK for nearly 20 years, will assure that you are in good hands and looking good in no time.

Make an appointment to have a thorough eye exam, where Dr. Carlson can assess your general health and medical background and determine if you are a suitable candidate for PRK.

Contact Claris today at 612.775.8009 or by email at

For your eyes, the choice is clear.