Richard Burns, M.D.


As a highly experienced San Diego LASEK surgeon, Dr. Burns has helped numerous patients achieve their vision correction goals. He treats patients from across Southern California, including Temecula, Hemet, Sun City and Murrieta. Dr. Burns uses some of the latest laser technologies and techniques to provide his LASEK eye surgery patients with the best possible results. Please peruse this page to learn more about LASEK procedure and how it compares to LASIK and PRK.

LASEK – Alternative to PRK and LASIK

Dr. Burns is proud to offer his San Diego Laser Eye Surgery patients one of the latest refractive procedures – laser epithelial keratomileusis (LASEK). This treatment is a cross between LASIK and PRK. However, LASEK significantly reduces side effects associated with both LASIK and PRK. For example, LASEK decreases post-operative pain commonly experienced by PRK patients, and it also reduces the risk of flap infections, blurred vision, and nighttime haloes associated with LASIK eye surgery. In addition, LASEK is appropriate for many patients who do not qualify for LASIK.
Schedule a free consultation with the highly regarded San Diego laser eye surgeon Dr. Burns to learn more about this exciting procedure and how it can help you achieve your vision correction goals.

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LASEK procedure has many advantages when compared to LASIK and PRK. In essence, LASEK delivers results similar to LASIK and PRK but without the side effects associated with these procedures. This happens mainly because the LASEK procedure does not involve the creation of the corneal flap. Some of the benefits of LASEK include:

  • LASEK is appropriate for patients who do not qualify for LASIK due to thin corneas, large pupils, and/or pterygium.

  • LASEK can be performed on patients with a deep set of narrow eyes.

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    LASEK surgery eliminates concerns related to the microkeratome used in LASIK surgery.

  • LASEK is a good option for patients who are afraid to undergo LASIK because the latter involves cutting the corneal surfacev.

How Does LASEK Work?


Step 1

Instead of a microkeratome or the IntraLase femtosecond laser used to create a corneal flap during LASIK, LASEK requires a special marker and a 20 percent alcohol solution to fold away a tiny layer of epithelium (the outermost layer of the eye’s surface), allowing access to the underlying tissue.


Step 2

The next step is very similar to LASIK in that Dr. Burns uses a special excimer laser.
Dr. Burns has to reshape the corneal surface so that it refracts light rays properly.


Step 3

He completes the LASEK procedure by carefully folding back the epithelial flap. A bandage soft lens is then placed over the treated area to promote smooth healing and rapid visual recovery. The bandage lens also reduces a patient’s discomfort and the risk of postoperative haze.

After Your LASEK Eye Surgery in San Diego

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Most of our patients experience very little, if any, postoperative pain during the first 24 hours after their LASEK surgery. Recent studies show that 44 percent of patients experience no pain after LASEK treatment, 42 percent report slight discomfort, and some post-operative pain is experienced by only 14 percent of LASEK patients. Regarding vision correction results, 90 percent of patients who undergo LASEK achieve 80 percent of their pre-operative best-corrected visual acuity within 10 days following their LASEK treatment.
While LASEK is appropriate for a wider range of patients than LASIK, it is not for everyone. Certain problems, such as Cataracts, cannot be treated with LASEK. For these patients, Cataract Surgery in San Diego is the recommended treatment. Dr. Burns is highly skilled in this surgery, which involves removing patient’s clouded lenses and replacing them with refractive IOLs (lenses).