No pictures of the surgery.
But there is a video!
First of all, I want to be clear that this is not a comparison of before and after with the help of a picture. Why? Because there's no picture to see! There is no cut on my eye, nor my eyes are swollen and my eyes are definitely not red.
I would show you the before and after shot of my face, but that's just me wearing the eyeglasses and then not wearing the eyeglasses. So, that might not be of help. However, I will share with you some of the experiences I had before, during and after my ReLEx® SMILE surgery. Hopefully, this will give a rough idea of what it is like to have a refractive eye surgery.
But first things, first - what is SMILE?
Called a pioneering and a next generation corrective procedure, it is an advancement to the Lasik eye surgery. It is generally employed for patients with nearsightedness with high prescription.
Two Months Before Surgery
What started as a checkup for wearing contact lenses, turned out to be a pre-check for the SMILE surgery. There were three distinct examinations – your eye pressure, power (or prescription) and possible complications, focus points, eye co-ordinations etc.
For the eye pressure test, the nurse asks you to put your eye in front of a very small lens-like object. Then the machine blows a little air into your eye. You might get freaked out but it’s so funny when you do. Other tests are specifically done by your doctors and the surgeons.
After all the tests, I was told to come the next day for the result. I got the news that I was fit for having a laser eye surgery and the surgeon said SMILE (SMall Incision Lenticule Extaction) surgery was best suited for my eyes.
I was called at 8:30 in the morning for the surgery. The nurses said that operations are usually done in the morning because we need to put eye drops for the first 12 hours after the surgery without fail. The nurse took me to the operation theatre (I still had my glasses on). After 15 minutes, the surgery was over. I could instantly see the differences. After 12 years, I could finally see everything clear with my eyes without any corrective lenses.
I was taken to a room where other patients were also there. I was given 3 different eye drops and one final before heading for home. Finally, two eye patches to be worn while sleeping.
Post Surgery Experiences
The Day of Surgery
My surgery was delayed until 10 o’ clock. Finally, I was called and the SMILE surgery was performed. Four different eye drops were prescribed – one of which was to be put every 15 minutes for the next 12 hours. It was artificial tear and it would help in lubrication and to protect the eyes from dust. Other 3 were anti-biotic and allergy resistant drops.
There was absolutely ZERO pain after the surgery. For those who do the Lasik surgery, there can be mild pain for 4-6 hours, but not in SMILE. The only complication was frequent tears and you would have to clean it every 5-10 minutes after the surgery. Also, it was very difficult to see in bright lights. So I had to wear sunglasses the whole day (even while inside).
At 11 o’clock in the night, I put my final 4 eye drops and went to the bed. Still no pain, but the vision is slightly foggy and blurry (which was expected). I was already made clear that the vision won’t be sharp until 4-6 weeks after the surgery. No exercise, no screen time and no reading allowed.
How is SMILE surgery performed? (video)
by London Vision Clinic
My surgery was also performed by a doctor who was trained by London Vision Clinic, UK. It holds joint patent with Carl Zeiss Meditec for this pioneering medical achievement of ReLEx SMILE surgery.
The Day After Surgery
It was the day of first post operative appointment. The surgeon checked my eyes and I had +1.25 D power in both eyes. They don’t correct your vision for a perfect 0.00 because your eyes will withdraw later. Slowly, the vision goes back to perfect 0.00 in 6-8 months, as I was told.
Vision: clear but foggy. I can’t still look outside the window without wearing sunglasses. No going out in the sun or in polluted places. However, going outside shopping and in clean air is okay. But again, no reading or watching TV/cell phones allowed yet.
7 Days After Surgery
Another post operative appointment. Today, they checked eye pressure too. The pressure in my right eye was found to be slightly higher than the normal, so the doctor prescribed me a drop for that. My 14 day appointment is next week, so I will get to see the results only after that. Vision has become slightly sharper, but I am still seeing foggy cotton like things around lamps and street lights at night. There is no blurriness during the day and is almost perfect.
There is no dryness but I am advised to put artificial tear drops every 2 hours. Good news is that watching TV and using cell phones are now allowed, in moderation. Things that are not allowed include extreme workouts, swimming, jogging outside and riding bikes. Sunglasses are still a must when going outside.
My next doctor’s appointment after surgery is next week. I hope to keep this page up as I add updates related to my vision and activities in the coming weeks. Do come back later to check on what I am feeling after the eye surgery.
Inside the operation theatre
Go inside the operation theatre and see what happens during the actual surgery. You will be surprised it takes so little time and that you don't need to be unconscious for the procedure.
You come in with glasses but go without one.