Excimer laser photorefractive keratectomy has been used for the correction of myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism. This laser removes tissue through a process termed photoablative decomposition, in which incident photon energy is sufficient to break molecular bonds. Selective removal of tissue across the anterior corneal surface results in a change in anterior corneal curvature. The surgical outcome may be influenced also by interindividual variability in wound healing and pharmacologic interventions. The nature of the excimer laser-tissue interaction, and clinical outcomes of predictability, stability and complications of surgery for myopia are discussed in detail.