Who doesn't want sharper vision? In Singapore, there are numerous options for enhanced optical vision, with treatments that are evidence-based and US FDA-approved.
ReLEx® SMILE® from ZEISS is a laser vision correction surgery that is gaining traction among the public. Despite that, people may still have many unanswered questions.
Ophthalmologist Dr David Chan answered a reader question regarding vision stabilisation after ReLEx® SMILE®. Here's what he had to share.
ReLEx® SMILE® is not as new as you think
ReLEx® SMILE® is a minimally invasive laser vision correction surgery that does not create a corneal flap. It is a 10-20 minute procedure, and only suitable for certain patients.
It is true that ReLEx® SMILE® might not have been around for as long as the other prominent eye corrective treatments but it has still been in practice for over 10 years since the first procedure in 2007 in the US.
Dr David believes that it is not an entirely new technique but rather a refinement of previous techniques. 
How does ReLEx® SMILE® work?
Much like other laser-based vision correction techniques, ReLEx® SMILE® adheres to the same principles of improving vision through reshaping the cornea. On this basis, LASIK and Advanced Surface Ablation (PRK, Epi-LASIK, and TransPRK) work the same way. 
It tries to improve on the limitations of earlier laser procedures
Aspects of earlier laser treatments such as the flap creation in LASIK or the longer visual recovery time in Advanced Surface Ablation are addressed with ReLEx® SMILE®. 
ReLEx® SMILE® relies on smaller incisions
ReLEx® SMILE® is able to reduce the incision size needed to achieve vision correction by five times compared to LASIK. In fact, many surgeons are drawn to it for its safety due to this smaller incision. 
So far, data for ReLEx® SMILE® has been encouraging
Many patients are often worried that there are insufficient medical studies to back the treatment's capabilities. However, the data has been encouraging so far. For example, a study showed that corneal sensitivity after ReLEx® SMILE® had no major difference compared to after FS-LASIK, possibly because ReLEx® SMILE® does not create a corneal flap. 
Results for corrective vision have been similar to LASIK
Thus far, results for corrective measures from ReLEx® SMILE® in dealing with myopia and astigmatism have been similar to those of LASIK. Comfort and speed of recovery are also on the same level. 
However, ReLEx® SMILE® cannot correct hyperopia
One limitation with ReLEx® SMILE® treatment is that it currently cannot correct hyperopia (farsightedness). 
Patients usually see results in one week
Patients will usually begin to notice relatively good vision about a week after the ReLEx® SMILE® procedure. 
There may be certain side effects
Akin to other laser treatments, patients may experience fluctuating vision right after the surgery. Also, there may be some dryness in the eye for several weeks or months but this should improve gradually. 
Generally, the laser procedure a patient goes for is dependent on the shape of the eye, corneal thickness, and the amount of short-sightedness and astigmatism one has. Other factors include the patient's occupation and hobbies. Be sure to consult your doctor if you have any other concerns and so he or she can help you choose the most suitable treatment.
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