Background The purpose of this study was to determine the accuracy of intraocular pressure (IOP) measurement after laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) or epithelial laser in situ keratomileusis (Epi)-LASIK using Goldmann applanation tonometry, air puff tonometry, ocular response analyzer corneal compensated IOP (ORA IOPcc) and Pentacam corrected IOP. Methods A prospective comparative clinical study was conducted between February and September 2011 on 30 eyes divided into four groups, i.e. 20 corneas of 10 patients before LASIK (group A), 20 corneas of the same patients 2 months postoperatively (group B), 10 corneas of five patients before Epi-LASIK (group C), and 10 corneas of the same patients 2 months postoperatively (group D). Patient age ranged from 20 to 50 years. IOP was measured using Goldmann applanation and air puff tonometry, ORA corneal compensation, and Pentacam correction (which also measured central corneal thickness). Results Significant positive linear correlations were found between IOP values measured by Goldmann applanation tonometry and other techniques, and with preoperative pachymetry in group A. The correlation between preoperative Pentacam-corrected and preoperative ORA corneal-compensated IOP was strongest for Goldmann applanation tonometry (r = 0.97 and r = 0.858 respectively, P < 0.001). Compared with preoperative values, postoperative IOP measured by the four methods were significantly lower. The difference was statistically significant when IOP was measured using Goldmann applanation and air puff tonometry compared with the ORA and Pentacam methods (P < 0.001 for LASIK patients and P = 0.017 for Epi-LASIK patients). Nonsignificant correlations were found between the degree of lowering of postoperative IOP and postoperative pachymetry in groups B and D. Conclusion Refractive surgery causes significant lowering of IOP as measured using Goldmann applanation tonometry, air puff tonometry, ORA compensation, and Pentacam correction. LASIK has a greater effect than Epi-LASIK on IOP measurement error following refractive surgery.