At Alliance Vision Institute in Fort Worth serving Dallas and DFW, we get it. You’re tired of the hassle and inconvenience of depending on glasses and contacts to see the world clearly. You wish you could see the clock first thing in the morning or fall asleep watching TV in bed. You wish you didn’t have to constantly keep up with eye exams, new prescriptions, and always refreshing your supply of contact lenses. You wish you could enjoy your favorite activities without worrying about your glasses slipping or your contacts drying out.

We understand why so many people come to us seeking to improve their vision, because many of us used to deal with the same frustrations. We also realize that LASIK has been the go-to procedure our patients connect with vision correction for a long time. But what you might not realize is that there may be an even better way to go: SMILE LASIK. SMILE LASIK may help you enjoy even better vision than LASIK, but with a lower risk of side effects, a shorter recovery period, and a higher rate of patient satisfaction.

Ready to learn more about this advanced path to visual freedom? We thought so!

What is SMILE LASIK?

What Is SMILE LASIK?

SMILE (Small Incision Lenticule Extraction) is a revolutionary, minimally invasive refractive surgery procedure that can help you achieve excellent visual outcomes — while leaving the front of the eye almost completely untouched.1

The unique SMILE LASIK operation uses an ultraprecise femtosecond laser, one of the trusted lasers used in LASIK, to create a small disc of tissue just under the surface layer of your cornea. When this disc or “lenticule” is removed via a minuscule opening in the eye, the curvature of the cornea is precisely changed: this helps your eye focus and can dramatically improve vision affected by nearsightedness or astigmatism.

Benefits of SMILE Laser Eye Surgery

Thanks to advances in technology, our ophthalmologists are able to provide many of our patients with enhanced benefits through the SMILE laser vision correction procedure, including:

A Minimally Invasive Procedure

Unlike traditional LASIK, our surgeons don’t need to create a flap to access the cornea during SMILE. SMILE is also a bladeless, all-laser procedure.

Fast and Effective

SMILE only takes a few minutes to perform, and with more than 6 million procedures performed across the world, this form of laser vision correction is proven to be effective for refractive errors such as nearsightedness and astigmatism.

Faster Visual Recovery

Patients enjoy a faster, more comfortable recovery after SMILE. Many of our patients get back to work and other normal activities (including exercise and wearing makeup) the very next day!

Enhanced Comfort

Our patients experience little to no discomfort during the SMILE procedure, and the recovery process is also more comfortable than with some other procedures.

SMILE is less likely to cause dry eye symptoms, a known side effect of LASIK and PRK.

Meet Your SMILE Surgeons

Our LASIK eye surgeons — Dr. Taylor Strange, and Dr. Brett H. Mueller II — are recognized leaders in the field of ophthalmology who specialize in vision correction procedures such as SMILE. With decades of experience and tens of thousands of successful surgeries between them, they know not only how to provide ultraprecise vision, but also a truly customized and comfortable surgical experience. It also helps that they’re born-and-raised Texans who love improving the communities they serve!
Life after SMILE LASIK

Preparing for SMILE Laser Eye Surgery

The biggest step in preparing for SMILE laser vision correction is easy: just come in to Alliance Vision Institute for a free consultation! You’ll undergo a brief eye exam and your doctor will review your medical history. If you’re a good candidate for SMILE (most people are!), your procedure will be scheduled and we’ll give you information on preparing and the recovery period.

The SMILE Vision Correction Procedure

SMILE vision correction is a very fast outpatient procedure: it takes only a few minutes per eye.

Before the procedure begins, anesthetic eye drops will be used to numb your eyes. You should feel no pain, and you won’t even need to worry about blinking because your eyes will be held open for you. Once you’re comfortable, your eye surgeon will use a precise laser to create a thin layer under your cornea (called a lenticule). When the lenticule is removed through a tiny incision, the shape of your cornea will be improved.

Life after SMILE LASIK

Recovery After SMILE LASIK

You’ll need someone with you to drive you home after SMILE surgery, and for the next 24 hours, you should avoid eye-straining activities such as reading, watching television, or using the computer more than absolutely necessary. One of the greatest things about SMILE is that many of our patients feel comfortable getting back to all of their favorite activities (and also work) the very next day.

You will likely experience some fluctuation in your vision, but you should start seeing some improvement within just a few hours. You’ll receive prescription eye drops to use for the next week to 10 days. While recovery sometimes takes a couple of weeks, most patients report that their eyes were fully healed and they enjoyed complete vision correction about a week after SMILE surgery!

Frequently Asked Questions About LASIK

While LASIK has long been the gold standard in laser vision correction, experts believe that that distinction will soon be held by SMILE.2 SMILE is always all-laser, and it does not require the creation of a corneal flap as the LASIK procedure does. SMILE also has a lower rate of complications,3 faster recovery time, and potentially better results.

SMILE is widely considered to be both safe and effective, especially when performed by an experienced ophthalmologist. Still, there are risks and side effects associated with every surgical procedure. Side effects of SMILE, while very rare, include:

The FDA states that additional rare side effects of LASIK may include:

  • Inflammation
  • Infection
  • Glare and/or halos
  • Over- or undercorrection of vision4
Most likely, yes! SMILE LASIK is an excellent choice for correcting myopia and minor astigmatism. The minimally invasive procedure and quick recovery time make SMILE a terrific option for patients with active lifestyles or who work in physically demanding occupations.

You must be at least 21 years old, in overall good eye health, have sufficient corneal thickness, and keep a stable vision prescription for at least this past year. Our team can provide you with all the details during a consultation and determine if SMILE LASIK is right for you.

You’ll notice the benefits of your SMILE surgery after your eyes have fully healed: crisp vision, reduced or even eliminated need for corrective eyewear, and the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re seeing the world the way it was meant to be seen. SMILE LASIK is much cheaper than a lifetime of eyewear and related eyecare, but you can’t put a price on true clarity.

That said, we realize the up-front cost of SMILE may cause hesitation for some of our patients. If this is the case, please get in touch! We can help you learn about payment and financing options so you can make your dream of clear vision a reality.

Schedule Your Free SMILE Consultation

SMILE LASIK offers our patients the latest advancements in laser eye surgery, and while it may be new to you, over six million eyes have been successfully treated. Alliance Vision Institute is proud to offer the latest, FDA-approved technology to our patients!

If you live in the Fort Worth, Dallas, or DFW area and are ready to learn more about SMILE, contact us to schedule your free consultation.


1 Chiam NPY, Mehta JS. Comparing Patient-Reported Outcomes of Laser In Situ Keratomileusis and Small-Incision Lenticule Extraction: A Review. Asia Pac J Ophthalmol (Phila). 2019 Sep-Oct;8(5):377-384. doi: 10.1097/APO.0000000000000258. PMID: 31478935; PMCID: PMC6784778. Available: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31478935/. Accessed December 15, 2022.
2 Sekundo W, Kunert K, Russmann C, Gille A, Bissmann W, Stobrawa G, Sticker M, Bischoff M, Blum M. First efficacy and safety study of femtosecond lenticule extraction for the correction of myopia: six-month results. J Cataract Refract Surg. 2008 Sep;34(9):1513-20. doi: 10.1016/j.jcrs.2008.05.033. Erratum in: J Cataract Refract Surg. 2008 Nov;34(11):1819. PMID: 18721712. Available: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18721712/. Accessed December 15, 2022.
3 Moshirfar M, Bruner CD, Skanchy DF, Shah T. Hyperopic small-incision lenticule extraction. Curr Opin Ophthalmol. 2019 Jul;30(4):229-235. doi: 10.1097/ICU.0000000000000580. PMID: 31033739. Available: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31033739/. Accessed December 15, 2022.
4 American Academy of Ophthalmology. What Is Small Incision Lenticule Extraction? Available: https://www.aao.org/eye-health/treatments/what-is-small-incision-lenticule-extraction Accessed December 15, 2022.