What are The Side Effects and Risks with LASIK, SMILE, or PRK?

Laser eye surgery is a very safe and effective way of improving the way that light is refracted by your eyes so you can see more clearly without the need for prescription eyewear like glasses or contact lenses. There are a number of different laser eye surgery techniques. As with any surgical procedure, there is a small element of risk involved. Patients have to undergo a FREE virtual consultation before surgery to ensure that they thoroughly understand the benefits of their chosen laser eye surgery as well as the small potential risks associated.

Your experienced laser eye surgeon at Manhattan LASIK Center will inform you of any side effects that you could potentially experience. We’ve got a breakdown of the side effects and risks associated with three of the most popular forms of laser vision correction.

Side Effects and Risks of LASIK Laser Vision Correction

 

There are a number of mild temporary side effects associated with LASIK. These include:

  • Mild discomfort that can be alleviated with artificial tears

  • A gritty, scratchy feeling in the eyes

  • Dry eyes

  • Visual disturbances, like glare from oncoming headlights

  • Red marks on the white part of your eye

Most side effects ease within a few weeks, although some people report discomfort and dry eyes lasting for several months after their procedure.

There is a fairly low incidence of complications with LASIK. The most common are flap-related complications. If the flap isn’t made correctly, it may not reattach properly to the surface of the cornea after the procedure, causing wrinkling or other issues that lead to distorted vision. The other common complication is dry eye, which is caused by a decrease in tear production. Around 50% of patients typically report dry eyes. It usually resolves itself, but it can be treated using lubricating eye drops. 

Side Effects and Risks of PRK Laser Vision Correction

 

PRK patients could also experience a few minor temporary side effects. The most commonly reported include:

  • Eye irritation and discomfort

  • Feeling as though there is a foreign body in the eye

  • Dry eye

  • Sensitivity to bright lights, experiencing glare/halos, etc

  • Difficulty with night vision

  • Excessive watering

PRK typically takes longer to fully recover from than LASIK, and you can expect some of your symptoms to last for around 3 or 4 weeks before they start to ease, although your discomfort should only last for around 72 hours.

While PRK laser vision correction is considered to be a safe procedure, like LASIK, it isn’t without a small element of risk. Some of these include permanent changes to your night vision that include visual disturbances such as glare/halos, double vision, severe dry eye, and double vision. Your PRK surgeon at Manhattan LASIK Center will discuss these with you and ensure that the benefits of undergoing the procedure outweigh the risks.

Side Effects and Risks of SMILE Laser Vision Correction

 

SMILE is one of the most advanced laser vision correction techniques and is designed specifically with patient safety in mind. This means that while there is always some element of risk involved, the incidences of complications are extremely low when compared to other techniques.

Nevertheless, there are a few potential problems that can occur, including:

  • Experiencing glare/halos around lights, especially at night

  • Infection

  • Inflammation

  • Debris where the corneal disc was removed

Due to its advanced technology, there are some very positive benefits associated with SMILE. Firstly, there is no flap created like there is in LASIK, and this eliminates the risk of flap-related complications occurring. Secondly, the small area of tissue called a lenticule, that is removed to reshape the cornea during SMILE is removed through a much smaller incision than is created in LASIK. This means that there is minimal trauma to the surface of the cornea, and this can help to preserve its integrity and will reduce the risk of complications occurring. Finally, the laser technique carries out the correction with the greatest possible accuracy and precision, minimizing side effects.

Get help choosing the right eye surgery for you, contact Manhattan LASIK Center in Edison, NJ at (201) 843-3861 to schedule a consultation today!