Posted by: Manhattan LASIK Center

LASIK is, without doubt, one of the best-known and most popular elective surgeries in the world. This innovative laser vision correction technique enables patients with refractive eye errors like myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism to be able to live life with minimal or no reliance on prescription glasses or contact lenses.

LASIK is widely available, but not everyone is a LASIK candidate. If you aren’t a candidate for LASIK, or if you would simply like to consider all of the options available to you, here’s what you need to know about the laser eye surgeries that are alternatives to LASIK. 


PRK was the very first form of laser vision correction surgery and is still a popular alternative to LASIK. During PRK surgery, the entire epithelium is removed and discarded. Once this part of the procedure is complete, the underlying corneal tissue is reshaped using the laser and then left to heal. Over the course of the following week or so, the epithelium will naturally regenerate.

Some of the benefits of PRK include:

  • The technique has a long history of success.
  • There is no risk of flap-related complications since there is no flap created in this technique.
  • Patients have been found to be less likely to experience dry eyes after PRK than LASIK.
  • PRK is suitable for people who have thin corneas or who work in jobs where damage to the cornea could be likely, such as welding, blacksmithing or woodworking.
  • In PRK, the structure and integrity of the corneal tissues is able to be preserved more easily.

Nevertheless, since the entire epithelium is removed, the healing process for PRK is longer than LASIK. Patients should also expect to experience more discomfort following PRK laser vision correction than they would if they had chosen LASIK. 


Also known simply as SMILE, this innovative technology uses an entirely different approach to reshaping the cornea. Instead of creating a flap or removing the epithelium, SMILE involves the creation of a tiny incision on the surface of the eye so that a disc-shaped piece of corneal tissue, called a lenticular, can be removed to correct your vision.

SMILE has evolved with the aim of being the safest and most comfortable form of laser vision correction available. Some of the benefits of this technique include:

  • It is proven to be safer than LASIK and other alternatives.
  • Patients tend to experience less post-surgical discomfort.
  • Lower risk of complications.
  • Predictable results.
  • Faster recovery than is seen in LASIK and other alternatives.
  • Fewer side effects.

There are no real disadvantages associated with the ZEISS SMILE technique.

If you’d like more information on any of the LASIK alternatives listed here, don’t hesitate to contact our knowledgeable laser vision correction team in Paramus NJ at Manhattan LASIK Center. Please call 212-759-9617 to schedule a FREE Virtual Consultation today!