Smile Pro Vs Femto Lasik

Laser Vision Correction has seen significant advancements in recent years, with SMILE Pro and Femto LASIK emerging as popular procedures. Both promise safer, more precise outcomes compared to traditional methods like LASIK.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the key differences between SMILE Pro and Femto LASIK, covering aspects such as procedure details, advantages, recovery, and cost.


Understanding SMILE Pro

SMILE (Small Incision Lenticule Extraction) Pro represents an evolutionary step from the original SMILE procedure introduced in 2016.

Developed by Carl-Zeiss and unveiled in January 2023, this advanced technique utilizes a state-of-the-art, AI-driven robotic laser system supported by algorithms that have been fine-tuned through the analysis of over 8 million eyes.


Understanding Femto LASIK

Femto LASIK, also known as Femtosecond-assisted laser in-situ keratomileusis, is a well-established procedure for Laser Vision Correction (LVC).

It follows a personalized approach, carefully tailored to each individual’s unique eye requirements. By using a bladeless technique, this method ensures a customized treatment plan with meticulous pre-procedural planning.


1. Procedure Overview

SMILE Pro involves creating a minuscule 2-4 mm incision using a femtosecond laser to prepare a 3D disc (lenticule) inside the cornea, which is then removed through the same incision to reshape the cornea. This keyhole technology aims for a safer, gentler, and faster correction of refractive errors.

Femto LASIK:
Firstly, wavefront analysis creates a personalized corneal surface image, which guides the specified correction treatment. Femto LASIK then utilizes femtosecond laser technology to create a precise, uniform, and minimally invasive corneal flap. Next, the flap layer is delicately raised to reveal the underlying layers of the cornea.

Based on the wavefront analysis data, the excimer laser reshapes the underlying cornea, thus correcting refractive errors and modeling its shape. The flap is then folded back and naturally adheres.


2. Safety and Precision

It boasts being painless, flapless, and safer than traditional methods. The absence of a corneal flap reduces the risk of complications, such as off-center flaps and torn-off flaps. Studies suggest it is superior in terms of precision, safety, and corneal stability.

Femto LASIK:
It employs blade-free technology to create a precise corneal flap using a femtosecond laser. Unlike traditional microkeratomes, which use a mechanical blade, the blade-free approach reduces risks and enhances predictability. Ultimately, this technology ensures a safer experience for patients.

However, the large-scale opening of the upper corneal layer (flap) can destabilize the eye’s surface, increase the chances of flap-related complications, and significantly weaken the cornea.


3. Visual Outcomes

It offers a simple one-step procedure. After the operation, patients usually experience immediate vision correction. Within a few weeks, their vision fully improves, demonstrating the success of the procedure.

Femto LASIK:
It provides long-term visual outcomes with a two-step procedure, emphasizing the precision of the femtosecond laser and rapid recovery of visual acuity.


4. Range of Correction

It primarily addresses myopia (-1.00D to -10.00 D) and astigmatism (up to -5.00 D), limiting its range of correction compared to Femto LASIK.

Femto LASIK:
It offers effectiveness in correcting a wide array of refractive errors, encompassing myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. It covers a range from -0.5 D to -8.0 D myopia, hyperopia between +1.00 and +5.00 D spherical equivalent, and astigmatism up to 4.00 D.


5. Incision Size and Healing

With a minimal incision of 2-4 mm (nearly 45°), SMILE Pro minimizes the impact on the cornea, leading to faster healing and reduced risk of complications.

Femto LASIK:
Femto LASIK involves a larger corneal flap incision of about 20 mm (nearly 300°) because the excimer laser cannot penetrate the topmost corneal layer.

While it is precise, the larger incision may lead to a longer healing time and an increased risk of dry eyes.


6. Post-Operative Recovery

Patients can expect a quick recovery, with clear vision within 24 hours and the ability to return to work just 2 hours after the procedure. The treatment is minimally uncomfortable and allows for a prompt resumption of normal activities.

Femto LASIK:
Visual recovery is quick, but not as fast as SMILE Pro. Most patients can expect clear vision the day after the procedure. Many can even return to work the day after their first post-op checkup. However, vision quality may continue to improve over several weeks.

Cost Considerations:
SMILE Pro: SMILE Pro is positioned as a premium option, reflecting its higher cost, priced at INR 1,50,000 for both eyes.
Femto LASIK: Femto LASIK offers a more affordable option, with a cost of INR 95,000 (all-inclusive).


7. Restrictions on Swimming

It is recommended to avoid swimming for 2-3 weeks after the procedure to allow for proper healing and minimize the risk of infection.

Femto LASIK:
For Femto LASIK, it is advised to refrain from swimming for one month as a precautionary measure.


8. Suitability for

Aviation Personnel:
In airplanes, the relative humidity is typically only 10-20%, which falls short of the ideal 50-60% percent. The dry air can cause discomfort, such as dry mucosa, and symptoms of keratitis sicca in the eyes, including pain and stinging. SMILE Pro is better for aviation personnel as it doesn’t exacerbate symptoms like femto-LASIK, which can result from the flap incision.

Individuals with Dry Eyes:
SMILE Pro is a great option for those who have been experiencing dry eyes from long-term contact lens use and can no longer tolerate wearing them. In contrast, choosing Femto-LASIK would only exacerbate these symptoms, making SMILE Pro the more suitable choice.


Making the Right Choice for Your Eyes

In the dynamic landscape of laser vision correction, both SMILE Pro and Femto LASIK stand out as advanced and effective options. SMILE Pro’s emphasis on a flapless, safer procedure and faster recovery may appeal to those seeking a premium experience. On the other hand, Femto LASIK’s versatility, covering a broader range of refractive errors, and its cost-effectiveness make it a compelling choice for many.

Ultimately, the choice between SMILE Pro and Femto LASIK depends on individual preferences, specific refractive needs, and budget considerations. Consulting with a qualified eye care professional to assess individual suitability is crucial in making an informed decision on the path to clearer vision.


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