Because they are more likely to suffer complications when a microkeratome is used to create a flap, people with thin corneas are typically not good candidates for LASIK surgery; however, laser epithelial keratomileusis (LASEK) is often a viable alternative. During this procedure, just the outer layer of corneal cells—called the epithelium—is peeled back using a special instrument and a special alcohol solution. The instrument creates tiny perforations in the epithelium, and the solution loosens the tissue. Next, a laser is used to reshape the underlying corneal tissue, and the epithelium is then set back in place and left to heal. LASEK’s recovery period is typically a bit longer than that of LASIK, but most side effects subside briefly after surgery.