Dry Eye Disease (DED) is a multi-factorial condition that affects millions of Americans.
2 Types of DED - Aqueous vs Lipid Deficiency
There are predominantly two categorizes of dry eye disease, aqueous and evaporative. Evaporative dry eye (EDE) is more common than aqueous-deficient dry eye (ADDE) but more than 1 in 3 patients will have a combination of both types.
ADDE is the result of reduced tear volume or insufficient water production by the lacrimal gland; whereas EDE occurs when there is an inadequate lipid layer, most commonly due to blockages in the meibomian glands aka Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (MGD).
Potential Contributing Factors
Allergies, eye makeup, certain medication, some medical conditions, increase in age, excessive screen time, overwear of contact lenses, and bacterial/Demodex overgrowth are just some of the of common causes of DED.
Diagnostic Imaging and Testing
At Beverly Hills Optometry: Advanced Dry Eye Center, our practice utilizes the latest state-of-the-art technology to properly identify, diagnose, and treat dry eyes disease, blepharitis, MGD, styes, chalazions, and ocular surface disease.
Since 9 out of 10 DED patients have MGD, many of the treatments work to improve the oil gland function and improve the tear film stability.
Although some patients may start with home remedies to soften their ocular symptoms, these may only mask the underlying issue and actually work better to supplement office-based treatments, which target the root cause of the condition.
Many of these in-office procedures work in one of three ways: 1) to exfoliate the eyelid margin, 2) to melt and unclog the oil glands, and/or 3) to reduce inflammation and stimulate the oil glands. Oftentimes, combining these methods work synergistically.
To date, some of the leading tools include Lipiflow, TearCare, BlephEx, ZEST, IPL, Scleral Lenses, Prokera, & punctal plugs.
To learn more about the causes of dry eye, the best OTC treatments, & the best in-office treatment, read the full link featuring Dr Kam Silani, NBC News Article.