Q. How does one choose one laser procedure over the other type? How do I know which is best for me, LASIK or smile?

Your suitability and the best type of laser surgery can only be determined via an eye examination and that too from a centre offering all kinds- LASIK, Bladeless LASIK and Relex smile and in the hands of a good eye surgeon who does a thorough pre laser evaluation.

Advantage of smile and surface ablation over LASIK is from the presence of flap (corneal cut) in LASIK versus none in surface ablation and smile.

Advantage of smile over surface ablation is long term need for steroid eye drops (12 weeks) in surface laser treatments versus that for 2 weeks in smile. If you default in this use, corneal healing slows down and can also lead to corneal scars. Also, significantly uncomfortable for first 2-3 days, hence, reserved for those who really have the indication for it as determined by the surgeon.

Advantage of LASIK over surface treatment and smile is faster visual rehabilitation in comparison.

All three procedures end up in 20/20 or 6/6, and visual results are comparable. No procedure has better visual acuity over others.

We can only say, that from our experience…

  1. Dr Shroff advices surface treatments when there is a necessity- thin cornea, previous laser treatment, scars or erosions on cornea, wants to join Army etc
  2. Smile more helpful for those who may have a risk of flap displacement like those in careers of martial arts, outdoor activities etc or those who fear the “flap” or corneal cut or those who have allergies and in the habit of knuckling or rubbing their eyes.

People have heard of LASIK and do not yet know much about Relex smile; also few centres offer Relex smile hence many more cases of LASIK in India.

If you are found fit for all three types of procedures, then the final decision can also depend on what you are most comfortable to undergo.

Posted in: Pre-Procedure FAQ’s