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SmartSight™ is a type of laser eye surgery referred to as keyhole surgery, because it doesn’t require a flap to be created in the cornea. If you’re considering having SmartSight™ laser eye surgery, read our content below to find out more about what it is, the process, who is suitable, recovery, cost and how it compares to RELEX SMILE™.

What is SmartSight™ laser eye surgery?

SmartSight™ with the Schwind ATOS femtosecond laser is the latest innovation in laser eye surgery, using keyhole techniques for very rapid healing after vision correction. OCL Vision is the first UK clinic to offer this type of surgery, working closely with the manufacturers of the laser (Schwind) in pioneering the treatment.

SmartSight™ uses a process known as refractive lenticule extraction, first popularised by the SMILE™ procedure. SmartSight™ is a technical evolution of SMILE™ which incorporates latest generation eye tracking and tissue saving for accurate correction of vision. The Schwind Amaris laser used for LASIK utilises an industry leading eye tracking system for exceptionally accurate correction of vision. SmartSight™ is the first femtosecond laser to utilise eye tracking technology for more accurate vision correction during lenticule extraction.

What is the process of SmartSight™ laser eye surgery?

SmartSight™ is a minimally invasive flapless laser vision correction procedure that uses a single laser to correct vision. Healing times are rapid and there is minimal discomfort.

Firstly your eye is totally numbed with the application of drops. This ensures that the entire procedure is completely painless. A corrective lens of tissue is created within the cornea by the Schwind ATOS Femtosecond laser, which takes 30-40 seconds. During this stage you will feel a mild pressure sensation on the eye.

The ATOS femtosecond laser is the most technologically advanced laser in this category. The laser is programmed by your surgeon based on your prescription and tailored to your corneal anatomy and pupil size with the greatest precision and accuracy. Your surgeon then gently removes this lens shaped tissue from your cornea through the small (2mm) keyhole. This allows your cornea to naturally relax back into an optically perfect shape that corrects your vision. The eye can feel a little irritable immediately after surgery, a bit like a grain of sand or dry contact lens, but this settles within 2-3 hours. You are seen the following day to check that the eye has healed well and at a subsequent visit to ensure that you have achieved the intended visual result.

Who is suitable for SmartSight™ laser eye surgery?

There are a number of factors which can influence whether or not a patient is suitable for SmartSight™ laser eye surgery. At your consultation your surgeon will discuss with you your prescription, eye health and personal preferences, and will make a recommendation based on these factors. SmartSight™ is suitable for those with high prescriptions over -3 dioptres, those who engage in contact sports, and may be better suited in cases of mild dry eye.

Generally SmartSight™ may not be suitable for the following groups of people:

Those under the age of 18 or in whom the glasses/contact lens prescription has not yet stabilised. We always check and confirm this for you at your consultation.
Those with prescriptions below -3 dioptres or those who are long-sighted are better suited to other established techniques such as LASIK or SmartSurface LASEK.
Some medical conditions such as active rheumatoid arthritis, keratoconus and connective tissue disorders may exclude you. We will check through all of your relevant medical history with you at your consultation.

Recovery after SmartSight™ laser eye surgery

The advantages of SmartSight™ are quicker recovery of the tear film and no flap, meaning that a faster return to normal life is possible. On the day of the procedure we advise resting your eyes for a few hours after surgery. Most patients have good vision at day 1 after surgery and very good vision after a week of healing. This continues to improve and becomes excellent vision by 1 month.

How much does SmartSight™ laser eye surgery cost?


  • Initial consultation
  • Follow-up appointments
  • 15 year aftercare guarantee
per eye
Indicative Finance From
£40 p/m
per eye
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How does SmartSight™ compare to RELEX SMILE™?

RELEX SMILE™ has established the principle of lenticule extraction as an effective laser eye surgery for correcting shortsighted prescriptions. With over 12 years of data and millions of SMILE™ procedures performed worldwide, the technique is proven to be safe and as effective as LASIK and LASEK for sight correction. Surgeons at OCL Vision now feel that there is sufficient robust evidence to offer lenticule extraction as an option for vision correction.

SmartSight™ with the Schwind ATOS laser adds technical advances to lenticule extraction which for the first time allows rotational eye tracking with a femtosecond laser for more accurate astigmatism correction, and an advanced tissue saving algorithm, removing less tissue during vision correction. This combines with the known advantages of flapless surgery including fast healing and tear film recovery.

Minimally invasive keyhole, flapless laser vision correction
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Lenticule extraction procedure with rapid healing
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Sophisticated pupil tracking software
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Sophisticated astigmatism software
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SmartSight™ laser eye surgery video

Watch this video to see the process and some of the benefits of SmartSight™ laser eye surgery.

SmartSight™ FAQs

You may have some questions about SmartSight™. Here we answer some of the most common ones, but if you do have further questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on 0203 369 2020.

Is SmartSight™ safe?

Yes, the risk of complications with SmartSight™ is extremely low. The principles of lenticule extraction are well established and known to be safe after millions of treatments. Flapless surgery is beneficial to avoid the rare risk of the flap moving or dislodging in the future even with significant trauma.

Why is OCL Vision the only clinic in the UK to offer SmartSight™?

OCL Vision is the only clinic in the UK with the Schwind ATOS Femtosecond laser which is required for the SmartSight™ treatment. The treatment has been carried out successfully in many other countries and OCL vision were handpicked by Schwind to be the flagship bearer of this new advanced technique in the UK. OCL vision already use the Schwind Amaris 1050 excimer laser for LASIK and advanced surface SmartSurface laser eye surgery, and it was a natural step up to work with Schwind for this next generation treatment.

Does SmartSight™ hurt?

SmartSight™ treatment is painless. Numbing drops are applied prior to the procedure commencing which makes for a painless experience. The eye can feel slightly irritated for a few hours after surgery, but this has completely settled by the next day.

How long does SmartSight™ take?

The SmartSight™ procedure typically takes 5-10 minutes per eye.



Our locations

We have a number of clinic locations in London and Hertfordshire. This includes our central London clinic close to Harley Street, our Hertfordshire clinic in Elstree, and our Kensington clinic. Consultations and aftercare take place in all of these clinics, while surgery is carried out in New Cavendish Street (central London).

new cavendish place

If you have any questions about laser eye surgery or what makes us unique as eye surgeons, please make an enquiry or call us on 0203 369 2020

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Last updated on January 30th, 2024 by Ms Laura de Benito-Llopis