How Long Does Laser Eye Surgery Take?

May 30, 2023

Refractive errors are an extremely common eye problem that occurs when light entering the eye does not focus on the retina. Laser eye surgery corrects refractive errors such as farsightedness, nearsightedness, and astigmatism. These procedures are safe and effective and take place in just minutes. 

What is Laser Eye Surgery?

There are several types of laser eye surgery. The details differ, but they all work in a similar way. Your eye surgeon accesses the cornea, the clear outer dome at the front of your eye. They will use a laser to change the shape of the cornea to change the angle of light as it passes through. This reshaping process corrects your vision, letting you reduce or eliminate your need for glasses or contacts. 

Laser Surgery Austin & Dripping Springs

How Long Does Laser Eye Surgery Take?

At Heart of Texas Eye Care, your procedure begins with numbing your eyes.   You may see some moving lights, but you will not feel any discomfort. The laser works on each eye for less than 30 seconds. The entire treatment process, from bringing you in and positioning you to the end of your procedure, can take less than half an hour. Your eye surgeon will describe the details of your treatment during your consultation. 

What are the Types of Laser Eye Surgery?

Laser eye surgery comes in three types, allowing your eye surgeon to treat more candidates with better results. Each form has its own benefits and may be right for different people. 

The Path to Clearer Vision Starts Here


This well-known type of laser eye surgery uses a laser to create a flap in the surface (epithelium) of your cornea. This flap is lifted aside to give your eye surgeon access to the deeper layers of the cornea and reshape them with another laser. The flap is returned to its place and heals quickly. 


This procedure uses a laser that creates a disc of corneal tissue underneath the epithelium. Your eye surgeon uses a tiny incision to extract the disc, leaving the cornea with a corrected shape. SMILE is recommended for some people due to the smaller incision than LASIK and less disruption of the cornea epithelium. 


PRK is an option for many people who cannot have other types of laser eye surgery. It removes the entire epithelium, allowing your surgeon to perform the reshaping process. The cornea grows back completely, making PRK appropriate for those with thin or abnormal corneas or people who engage in contact sports. 

What is Recovery Like After Laser Eye Surgery?

Recovery from laser eye surgery depends on the type of procedure. Most people who have LASIK or SMILE can see clearly and return to their usual activities within one to two days, although their vision may take a few weeks to stabilize. The recovery from PRK is longer, with blurry vision lasting several days. 

Dr. Dudek and her team were absolutely amazing throughout the entire process. My LASIK procedure was fast, safe, professional, and I felt extremely confident with them from start to finish. I could not recommend them enough, LASIK is a no brainer.

Take the Next Step

If you’d like to learn more about laser eye surgery, schedule a consultation with our Heart of Texas Eye Care team, serving Dripping Springs, Austin, Kyle, Bee Cave, Marble Falls, and other surrounding areas. Contact us at (512) 213-2220 today!

*Individual results may vary