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Signs You Could Be A Good Candidate For SMILE Surgery

The world of laser eye surgery has continued to grow and develop. Each year, procedures become safer and more precise. One of the most recent procedures to become popular is called the SMILE (small incision lenticule extraction) procedure, which involves amending the shape of the eye with only a small incision in the cornea. If you are nearsighted or suffer from astigmatism, you might be wondering if this is a good procedure for you. Here are some signs you'd be a good candidate.

1. Your prescription has not changed in a year or more.

Before an eye surgeon will perform a SMILE procedure on you, they will want to know that your prescription has not changed in at least a year. Longer is better. If your vision is not stable and they perform the procedure, your vision may continue to deteriorate post-surgery, which would mean you'd need glasses again in the future. If your vision is still changing, you may need to wait another year or two before you're a good candidate for SMILE.

2. Your corneas are healthy.

This procedure involves having a laser make an incision in your cornea and then abrade away some of your corneal tissue. This can only be safely done if your corneas are healthy. If you've had a lot of eye infections in the past or if you've been prone to corneal abrasions, then SMILE may not be safe for you — at least not right now.

3. You don't have any health conditions that impede your ability to heal — or the conditions you do have are under control.

The average person's eyes only take a couple of weeks to heal and recover after SMILE surgery. It's important that you heal quickly so you can go back to your normal routine. If you have a condition like an autoimmune disorder that impedes healing, your doctor will want to make sure it is well-controlled, with medications or otherwise, before they perform a SMILE surgery. You may have to have some blood tests run to verify your overall health.

4. You're very physically active.

SMILE is generally recommended for people who are physically active. This is because, unlike with other eye surgeries to correct vision, the procedure does not involve making a flap in the cornea. If you're an athlete or you work in a physically demanding industry, SMILE may be a good choice for you. If you're not very active, SMILE won't do any harm, but you might be better off choosing a less-expensive, less-involved eye surgery that has similar results.

SMILE is great for many patients, but it is not for everyone. Consider the factors above, and talk to your eye doctor to learn more about SMILE surgery