Laser Eye Surgery Centre in Brisbane



The First Minimally Invasive, Flapless Procedure

SMILE® is an advanced laser eye surgery for patients with myopia (short-sightedness) and astigmatism, a revolutionary procedure that's changing the face of vision correction.

It is the first and, until now, only solution for performing Small Incision Lenticule Extraction (SMILE®), a minimally invasive and flapless procedure.

With SMILE®, patients can expect shorter treatment times, faster recovery, less side effects and excellent outcomes with high predictability.

Now that's something to smile about.

Single-Step Laser Treatment

100% Bladeless & Flapless

No Pain & Quick Recovery

Minimally Invasive

Reduced Side Effects

Next Generation Treatment in Vision Correction

The SMILE® Difference

Corneal refractive laser surgery has been widely used in the last 30 years to correct vision impairment and eye conditions such as myopia (short-sightedness), hyperopia (long-sightedness) and astigmatism (blurred vision). From PRK to LASIK, SMILE® is at the forefront of the 3rd generation of laser vision correction, and a ground-breaking treatment that's redefined the field of refractive surgery.

With SMILE®, the entire correction is performed as a single-step without the creation of a flap: on one laser, with one treatment plan and one laser process. It is the first only minimally invasive way of correcting vision.

Traditional LASIK procedures involve using a femtosecond laser to create a flap which is then folded back and an excimer laser is used subsequently to remove the corneal tissue.

Using a high-performance femtosecond laser, SMILE® creates a lenticule (tissue disc) inside the cornea which is removed through a small 2mm incision. The surface of the cornea is almost untouched and there is less disturbance of the corneal nerves, meaning less changes of prolonged dryness of the eyes.

Think of SMILE® as PRK without the discomfort and LASIK without a flap.


1st Generation PRK


Surface Ablation Surgery

With PRK, the visual correction is made directly to the surface of the cornea. Patients experience a difference in their vision on the same day. However, recovery generally takes longer compared to other procedures and can be accompanied by some discomfort.


2nd Generation LASIK


Flap Surgery

LASIK is the most popular laser vision correction procedure and renowned for producing excellent results. Patients generally undergo quick visual recovery with no complications post-surgery. However, there is a higher incidence of dry eye when compared with SMILE®.


3rd Generation SMILE®


Minimally Invasive, Flapless Surgery

SMILE® is a minimally invasive and gentle surgical procedure that requires no flap. As a result, the outer corneal layer of the eye remains largely intact. Recovery with SMILE® is also fast, with less incidence of post-surgery complications such as infections, dry eye or epithelial ingrowth.

SMILE® Surgery - The Operation


Step 1

A refractive lenticule (tissue disc) and small incision are created inside the intact cornea - all in one step.


Step 2

The lenticule is removed through the incision with only minimal disruption to the corneal biomechanics.


Step 3

Removing the lenticule changes the shape of the cornea, thereby achieving the desired refractive correction.

Benefits of SMILE®

SMILE® combines the advantages of PRK and LASIK, to provide patients with minimally invasive and flapless surgery for the very first time.

Flapless Procedure

No flaps are created in the SMILE® procedure and as a result, there is no risk of flap displacement or other flap-related complications.

Minimally Invasive

Femto-LASIK requires a side-cut of roughly 20 mm. With SMILE®, a small incision of 2-4 mm is sufficient, which is a remarkable 80% reduction. Furthermore, a 30% less cap cut is needed for the lamella incision area when compared to Femto-LASIK.

Better Preservation of the Corneal Architecture

With SMILE®, the majority of the upper corneal layers remains intact. This offers the potential for more biomechanical preservation and stability.

Less Incidences of Post-Surgery Complications

SMILE® also reduces the incidence of post-surgery complications such as infections and epithelial ingrowth. Requiring only a small incision rather than a flap, there are fewer transected nerves. Consequently, a significantly reduced incidence of dry eye is likely to be correlated.

Effective & Efficient

The superior technology behind the VisuMax laser system used to perform SMILE® means there is excellent predictability, particularly for higher refraction values (e.g. patients with high myopia). With only one machine involved in the procedure, the treatment process is also more efficient as patients no longer have to switch between two laser systems.

State-Of-The-Art Equipment & Technology

The entire SMILE® procedure is performed with the ground-breaking femtosecond laser, VisuMax.

This all-in-one femto laser system incorporates superior technology to provide outstanding cutting precision, exceptional speed and a gentle treatment approach, effectively enhancing the treatment experience for patients. VisuMax enables the creation of a pre-calculated lenticule and incision with utmost accuracy and dependability. As a result, there is no need for complex nomograms or fluence tests.

AT LASERSIGHT, we pride ourselves in offering our patients with the safest and most advanced procedures, and we are excited to welcome VisuMax to our suite of innovative equipment and technologies.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know if SMILE® surgery is right for me?

SMILE® is most suitable for patients with myopia (short-sightedness) and astigmatism (blurred vision). This procedure is particularly ideal for those who have thin corneas, dry eyes or a contact lens intolerance, and were previously not suitable for laser eye surgery. However, no two patients or eyes are the same. As a result, a comprehensive assessment by a professional eye surgeon is imperative.

What is involved during SMILE® surgery?

During the procedure, the Eye Surgeon will create a refractive lenticule (a disc-shaped piece of tissue) and small incision (roughly 2-4mm) with the laser. The lenticule is then removed through the keyhole incision, which changes the curvature of the cornea to correct the patient's vision. Lid-guards will be positioned to keep eyes open without any accidental blinking.

Does the SMILE® procedure hurt?

No, SMILE® does not hurt. On the day of treatment, patients will receive numbing drops in their eyes to eliminate any pain or sensation during the procedure.

How long does SMILE® surgery take?

The SMILE® procedure takes approximately 28 seconds.

When will I see results from SMILE® surgery?

Your vision will initially be blurry post-surgery but will begin to clear over the following 24 hours. You will need to arrange for someone to drive you home after your procedure. A clear eye shield is placed over your eye/s before leaving the clinic. These shields must stay on overnight but can be removed before coming into the clinic the next day.

How long is the recovery from SMILE® surgery?

Results are effective within 24 hours and overall recovery stabilises in 6 weeks.

Will I still need to wear glasses or contact lenses after SMILE® surgery?

Some people who have laser eye surgery will still need to wear glasses or contact lenses to achieve optimum vision. However, their natural eyesight should improve drastically. It's important to remember that laser eye surgery won't prevent the occurrence of age-related vision problems and so for some, may eventually need reading glasses anyway.

Why would I choose SMILE® over LASIK?

Patients love the possibility of LASIK-like visual recovery without the need for a cornea flap. The results of SMILE® are also comparable to or better than LASIK.

Some of the other advantages of SMILE® include:

  • Saves significant time with entire treatment completed in a single step
  • Spares maximum cornea nerves due to the small incision
  • Smaller healing phase because of small incision
  • No risk of flap displacement even while engaging in extreme activities
  • Better preservation of the corneal architecture
What are the risks and complications from SMILE® surgery?

However, before undertaking any medical procedure it is important to understand the associated risks and limitations so you can make an informed decision. We understand the concerns you have for your eyes' health and hold your safety as the highest priority. Please feel free to talk with any of our specialised laser surgery staff about any of your concerns.

How much does SMILE® surgery cost?

SMILE® surgery costs $3700 per eye. However, costs may vary patient to patient. Come and see us for a personalised consultation and assessment.

Bupa Ultimate private health insurance will cover the entire surgery cost of PRK, LASIK or SMILE®*.

*Please note as of the 1st July 2018 Bupa introduced a 3-year wait period for new members or for members upgrading to the Ultimate policy.

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