Innovations in Laser Eye Surgery: ReLEx SMILE

Having surgery is always a big deal. Moving into a hospital ward. Wearing that embarrassing gown. The food. Being put under anaesthesia. Waking up feeling worse than you did before. The food. And that’s all without even mentioning the procedure itself.

The point is, when we think of surgery, we think about something you do as a last resort — when your health is at risk and/or you have no other choice. So deciding to go out of your way — when you’re perfectly healthy — and have something like Laser Eye Surgery is pretty radical, to say the least.

But people do it – and not just for their vision. Vasectomies, tummy tucks, facelifts, breast implants and nose jobs, organ donation, liposuction, bunion removal; these are all elective procedures that thousands of people choose to undergo every day, often for reasons that are nowhere near life-critical. And with well over 55 million treatments carried out to date, Laser Eye Surgery is the most popular elective procedure in the world.

The fact is, surgery has come a long long way in recent years; so much so that many treatments today you wouldn’t even recognise as surgical procedures — no long overnight stays, bland food, or invasive techniques. As the most popular treatment and one that has been at the leading edge of technology since its inception, arguably for no other procedure is this truer than with Laser Eye Surgery.

A new era of Laser Eye Surgery

Having Laser Eye Surgery is worlds away from your typical surgical procedure. And the latest advancement in the treatment, ReLEX SMILE (small incision lenticule extraction), is further away still.

Whereas in the past the surgeon needed to create a flap in the cornea to reach the permanent tissue underneath, SMILE bypasses this whole process altogether, using advanced femtosecond technology to access the corneal bed via a tiny keyhole incision. In this way, SMILE makes what was already a short and painless procedure an incredibly quick, minimally-invasive treatment that can be performed in a matter of minutes.

It’s hard to get across just how revolutionary SMILE is, but to give it a go, here are some of the treatment’s major benefits:

Treatment and Recovery Time: If there’s one thing you want from Laser Eye Surgery it’s a quick recovery time. It’s no good the treatment being revolutionary if it takes six months to recover from. With SMILE, the procedure itself takes just a few minutes per eye, and within 24 hours, your vision is already up to 80 percent of its optimum level.

Safety and Comfort: With its minimally invasive approach, SMILE also takes Laser Eye Surgery to another level of patient comfort. Not only is the procedure shorter and requires only the use of one instrument, but the dry eye symptoms resolve in about 3-6 months rather than 6-12 months for LASIK.

Suitability: Even if you’ve been told you’re unsuitable for Laser Eye Surgery, there’s a good chance you’re a candidate for SMILE. For instance, patients that have higher prescriptions, are contact lens intolerant, have thin corneas, or suffer from dry eye.

SMILE is the treatment that’s leading the way into a new era of Laser Eye Surgery, and even surgery on the whole. It’s a 21st-century treatment favoured by everyone from sportspeople to beauty Youtubers, and with such a great patient experience and impressive results, it’s clear to see why.