Laser Eye Surgery - more to SMILE about
Short sightedness, long sightedness and astigmatism, these focusing errors need not hold you back from doing what you want to in life. Playing sport or swimming with glasses can be a challenge. Working outside can be difficult if you wear contact lenses.
Twenty one years ago, eye surgeon Dr David Kent and optometrist Jane Patterson introduced laser eye surgery to the South Island, establishing Fendalton Eye Clinic in Christchurch in 1996.
In October 2017, Fendalton Eye Clinic installed a new Visumax femtosecond laser allowing Dr Kent to deliver the most advanced laser corrective procedures available in the world. The Visumax femtosecond laser allows Dr Kent to add SMILE treatments as an additional vision correction option.
SMILE stands for Small Incision Lenticule Extraction which represents the latest advance in laser eye surgery treatments, a painless minimally invasive laser procedure where the Visumax laser creates a lenticule inside the intact cornea. The lenticule is then removed from the edge of the cornea.
“SMILE provides the most benefit to patients who are moderately shortsighted and who may be involved in contact sports. LASIK is still the most precise treatment for lower shortsighted corrections, for treating significant astigmatism and for correcting long sightedness,” says Dr Kent. Dr Kent has performed more LASIK procedures than any other eye surgeon in New Zealand and uses the Schwind Amaris 1050RS excimer laser, which is the only laser on the market to provide the accuracy of eye tracking in seven dimensions. The clinic has its own purpose-built laser eye surgery facility. Dr Kent has performed more than 25,000 laser eye surgeries. Recognised internationally by his colleagues, Dr Kent is currently the New Zealand representative for the Australasian Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery.
Laser eye surgery may be an option for you if you are over 20 years of age, are long sighted, short sighted or have astigmatism. “The overwhelming reward for the entire team, in carrying out laser treatments, is seeing the transformation in people’s lives,” says Jane. “For many people laser eye surgery is quite literally life-changing.”