Smile Procedure Specialist


Martin L. Fox, MD, FACS

Cornea & Refractive Surgery located in Midtown East, New York, NY

While LASIK is arguably the grandfather of laser eye surgery, it was only a matter of time before next-generation techniques began to develop. One such technique is the SMILE® procedure, which now figures among the alternatives to LASIK surgery at Laserfox. Dr. Martin Fox offers this minimally invasive laser surgery to his patients in New York City, allowing them to have their vision problems corrected in one easy step. To explore the SMILE procedure, call or schedule an appointment using the online booking tool.

Smile Procedure Q & A

What is SMILE?

SMILE stands for small incision lenticule extraction, and it’s an alternative to LASIK surgery that was approved by the FDA in 2016.


Am I a candidate for SMILE?

Dr. Fox offers the SMILE procedure to help correct problems with distance vision, or nearsightedness. To be considered for the procedure, you should:

  • Be over 22 years old
  • Need correction of no more than 10 diopters
  • Have no more than -0.5 diopters of astigmatism
  • Have stable vision for the last 12 months

During your initial consultation, Dr. Fox determines whether you meet these criteria and, if so, discusses the pros and cons of a SMILE versus a LASIK procedure with you.


What is the difference between SMILE and LASIK?

During a LASIK procedure, Dr. Fox creates a flap in your cornea using a femtosecond laser and then reshapes the tissue underneath to correct your vision. With the SMILE procedure, Dr. Fox uses the same femtosecond laser to create a lenticule within your cornea. He then makes a tiny incision in the corner of your cornea and removes the lenticule, changing the shape of your cornea.

This process allows Dr. Fox to leave many of your upper corneal layers undisturbed because there’s no need for a flap. The tiny incision, which boasts an 80% smaller side-cut and 30% smaller cap cut than LASIK, also means your cornea is more stable and heals more quickly afterward. This procedure also cuts down on the incidence of post-operative dry eyes that’s sometimes associated with LASIK.

Unlike LASIK, SMILE doesn’t correct farsightedness or astigmatism, so its applications are limited to nearsightedness.


When will I see results after the SMILE procedure?

Most people report an immediate improvement in their vision. Because the SMILE procedure is a one-step process using only a tiny incision, your healing time is greatly reduced. Dr. Fox also performs this procedure on an outpatient basis using only local anesthesia, which means you’re free to return home afterward.

Dr. Fox typically supplies you with drops after the procedure, which you should take according to his instructions.

If you’re tired of wearing glasses for nearsightedness, call Laserfox to find out about the SMILE procedure. Or you can use the online scheduling tool to book an appointment.