ReLEx SMILE (Laser Vision Correction, Small Incision Lenticule Extraction) – Utah, Salt Lake City*

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You've probably heard of LASIK and PRK, but have you heard about SMILE? SMILE, or small incision lenticule extraction, is a technique where a femtosecond laser is used to remove a small round lenticule of corneal tissue from the middle layers of the cornea. The procedure is performed through a small incision, similar to the idea of laparoscopic surgery. The benefit is less healing time. The visual recovery is slightly slower than LASIK but the final visual result is comparably excellent. SMILE is FDA-approved to treat nearsightedness, but approval to treat astigmatism is on the horizon. At Waite Vision in Lehi, UT we strive to give our patients the best care in the world. Our board-certified ophthalmologist and founder, Dr. Aaron Waite, is extremely skilled in several vision correction surgeries, offering phenomenal results to each of his patients. During a consultation we will help determine if SMILE could help you regain your vision.

Ideal Candidates

Those who have extremely active lifestyles may be a better fit for SMILE than LASIK. Because of the corneal flap that is created during LASIK, there is a risk of detachment in highly active patients. SMILE may be right for you if you meet the following criteria:

  • You are 22 years old or older
  • Your prescription has not changed in the last year
  • You are nearsighted with -1 to -8 diopters
  • You have minimal astigmatism
  • Your cornea is healthy
  • You are in good overall health
  • You have realistic expectations about the outcome of the surgery

Procedure Technique

Before your surgery begins, your Dr. Waite will place anesthetic numbing drops on your eye and will place a holder between your eyelids to prevent blinking during the procedure. He will then use a computer-controlled femtosecond laser to place a small, precise incision in the peripheral cornea. At the same time, the laser creates a lenticule (tiny segment) in the mid-cornea then removes it through the small incision. After removing the corrective lenticule, the new corneal shape corrects nearsightedness. The SMILE procedure takes less than 10 minutes to complete the total surgery and only 30 seconds of actual laser treatment. Most patients are able to return to work within 24 hours after the procedure.

What to Expect

It is not uncommon to experience some minor burning, itching, or irritation in your eyes. You may also encounter watery eyes or minor discomfort. These are common side effects and will subside in the hours and days following the procedure. Some patients notice immediately improved vision, while others may not experience the full result of their procedure for a few months. The healing time for SMILE can be very short and your chances of experiencing dry eye and other complications are minimal.

Procedure Cost

SMILE is often considered an elective procedure by insurance companies. As such, it is not often covered.

The one-time cost of SMILE is far less than the cumulative recurring expense of glasses or contact lenses, and you’re making an investment in yourself. You’ll immediately discover the significant improvement in the quality of your life when you’re free of glasses or contacts. Think of the value of waking up in the morning, seeing your alarm clock clearly and conquering the day without the continual need to search for your glasses. The benefits of having clearer vision are endless. The value offered by SMILE is much greater than the dollar amount invested.
Waite Vision assists you in improving the quality of your life by accepting major credit cards and health savings accounts (HSAs). We also offer easy financing plans starting as low as $99 per month. Ask a team member to learn more about the multiple payment options available.

SMILE For Better Results

At Waite Vision, we're pleased to offer the most advanced laser vision correction technology in the region. You can be assured you will receive the best fit procedure for your unique eyes and lifestyle. To learn more about laser vision correction, consult our Lehi, UT practice today. We serve the greater northern Utah region and look forward to exceeding your expectations.

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