How long after SMILE can I see
How long after SMILE can I see

How long after SMILE can I see?


People with severe short-sightedness can correct their eyesight using the novel keyhole laser procedure known as SMILE. Small Incision Lenticule Extraction, or SMILE, is a minimally invasive bladeless surgery. SMILE is an innovative refractive eye surgery that reshapes the cornea without blades. SMILE requires a smaller incision and no flap than LASIK and is less invasive. People with or without astigmatism can benefit from SMILE eye surgery, an excellent alternative to the more well-known LASIK and LASEK procedures.

The entire procedure takes less than 15 minutes to complete for both eyes, with the laser being used for a relatively short amount of that time.

During SMILE Surgery

With the help of a VisuMax femtosecond laser, a Carl Zeiss Meditec-exclusive product, SMILE laser eye surgery is carried out. A tiny, lens-shaped piece of tissue (lenticule) is created inside the cornea during the SMILE surgery by the surgeon using a femtosecond laser. The surgeon retrieves the lenticule through this incision and discards it after creating a small arc-shaped incision with the same laser on the cornea’s surface. Removing the small lenticule can treat nearsightedness by changing the cornea’s shape. Sharper vision develops relatively fast after the corneal incision, which heals in a few days without stitches.

Doctors can treat up to -10.00 diopters (D) of nearsightedness with SMILE laser eye surgery. Candidates must be at least 22 years old, have an astigmatism of no more than -0.50 D, and have a stable prescription for glasses for at least 12 months.

How long will my vision be cloudy after SMILE?

A few days following a SMILE eye surgery, hazy vision is typical and can be expected. Over a few weeks or months, your vision should gradually improve.

Additionally, there are a few post-operative effects that could initially impair our eyesight, such as:

  • A glare/halo effect: Usually only noticeable at night, this will go away three months after your treatment.
  • The frequent side effect of laser vision correction, light sensitivity, should subside in about a week. But until then, ensure you have safety glasses on whenever you walk outside.
  • Dry eyes: The eye drops your doctor ordered should assist with this side effect, and it will start to get better as your eyes begin to recover and heal.

Although each patient’s recovery from SMILE laser eye surgery is different, these side effects are often not signs of a more serious problem. You can make an appointment for a thorough eye checkup if your hazy vision lasts much longer than planned.

Effects of the SMILE Surgery

According to studies, SMILE achieves the same visual acuity level as LASIK when treating nearsightedness without making a corneal flap a la LASIK. In 328 patients who received the SMILE operation in one research, 88 per cent of them had uncorrected visual acuity (UCVA) of 20/20 or greater following surgery, and all but one of them had UCVA of at least 20/40. According to research, there may be a lower risk of dry eyes after SMILE than after LASIK. Comparing SMILE to LASIK, it also seems like there may be a lower chance of dry eye issues.

There could be several causes for this, one of which is that SMILE causes less damage to corneal nerves because surgery is performed inside the cornea rather than using a significant corneal flap. Comparing the ability of the cornea to keep form (particularly after stress) after LASIK and the very small SMILE incision, the latter may provide the cornea with greater biomechanical stability. Finally, there is a higher chance with LASIK for high nearsightedness correction that, you will require additional surgery to achieve the ideal level of vision clarity without glasses. A smaller degree of corneal dehydration may occur during the SMILE operation, which could explain why there seems to be a lower likelihood of needing an extra procedure after SMILE to correct severe myopia.

The SMILE laser eye procedure -everything about it

To begin with, LASIK and PRK are frequently used to cure nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism, whereas SMILE is now used largely to treat only nearsightedness. Additionally, SMILE cannot cure higher-order aberrations (HOAs), which can impair night vision, but LASIK and PRK can. SMILE might slightly raise HOAs. Additionally, PRK (rather than a second SMILE) is often the preferable enhancing method for the greatest results if you still need vision correction following a SMILE procedure because of residual refractive error. Lastly, just like any recent vision correction surgery, a surgeon may need to complete several SMILE procedures before mastering the surgical techniques necessary for the best results and the lowest possible dangers.

A premium (custom) LASIK procedure costs around the same as SMILE. In different places of the world, laser vision correction costs differ. If you are nearsighted and satisfy the other requirements listed above, SMILE laser vision correction may be an excellent option. A thorough eye exam and a meeting with a refractive surgeon are the following steps.


You may discover that you are not a candidate for LASEK or LASIK therapy, but SMILE eye surgery may still be a choice if any of the following apply to you:

  • Your cornea is thinner than average.
  • You are unable to wear contact lenses.
  • Your dry eyes range from mild to moderate.


Trials have shown that after SMILE therapy, eyesight often improves by 80% within a few hours and 100% within a few weeks. It would be best if you were informed that while recovery is rapid, there is a potential that your vision may be momentarily somewhat blurry following the procedure. The day following your procedure, you will have an appointment as part of your surgery aftercare plan.

There will then be follow-up visits at regular intervals for up to 12 months. Your surgeon will check on your progress at your aftercare sessions, listen to any concerns you may have, and determine whether you need any additional treatment. Compared to other procedures like LASIK and LASEK, SMILE laser eye surgery is appropriate for a larger spectrum of patients. SMILE may be an excellent option if you’ve been advised you aren’t a candidate for another kind of laser eye surgery.

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