SMILE (Small Incision Lenticule Extraction) is a laser vision correction procedure performed using a femtosecond laser to create a thin disc of tissue – similar to the shape of a contact lens – from within the layers of cornea. The disc of tissue, known as a lenticule, is removed through a small opening in the surface of the eye, also created by the laser, to change the overall shape of the cornea to improve vision while leaving most of the eye’s surface undisturbed.
Because the incision in the surface of the eye is small – less than 6 mm – the SMILE laser eye surgery procedure is considered minimally invasive. SMILE has been available outside the United States for more than 10 years, and more than 1.5 million procedures have been performed worldwide.
How good is SMILE? Research is showing SMILE produces virtually the same visual acuity as LASIK for the correction of nearsightedness. To date, more than 400 clinical studies have been conducted to determine it is a safe and effective vision correction option for those who are good candidates. Recent research finding include:
- Six months after surgery, 99 percent of participants achieved 20/40 or better vision.
- 84 percent of participants achieved 20/20 or better vision at the 6-month post op visit
- 91.7% stated they were “Very Satisfied” with results of their surgery.