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For many years dry eye was ignored.  It wasn’t uncommon for a patients eye doctor to give the patient some artificial tears and send them on their way.  In essence, dry eye was ignored.  Many patients have complaints of foreign body sensation in their eyes, or burning, dryness or sensitivity to wind.  These patients suffer from a real condition called dry eye syndrome which can be very unpleasant.   Today, doctors seem to understand dry eye syndrome (DES) better.  DES is a multifactorial condition associated with ocular surface inflammation and tear film production issues.  As the population ages, more patients will be diagnosed with DES.  Des can be associated with smoking, contact lens use, autoimmune disorders and diabetes.  Computer usage or frequent watching of television  can also put strain on the eyes and cause dryness.   With twenty percent of the population being diagnosed with dry eye syndrome, it is still believed that the disease is still under diagnosed.  Although you will not go blind from dry eyes, it does affect your complete persona.  Patients with significant dry eyes are “not too happy”- it can be a chronic pain syndrome and difficult to care for these patients with a positive outcome.   Treatment is relatively straightforward.  Warm compresses can be helpful.  Eye drops can be very soothing and help relieve the symptoms of dry eyes, but patients with glaucoma should be directed to use preservative free artificial tears considering a laser to eliminate the need for glaucoma drops may be a good option, as the preservatives in glaucoma medications can destabilize tear film.

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Vision Treatments & Technology

This journal will include information in the optometry and ophthamology fields including studies and other valuable eye care stories.

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