The Dry Eye Zone

Rebecca's Blog


Study: Egg whites, milk, toothpaste... and MGs and dry eye

No, this is not about dietary factors in dry eye... just innovative descriptions for what comes out of the MGs and which type of abnormal crud was most closely associated with dry eye.

Hey, I'm happy when an ophthalmologist deigns to even press on those little MG orifices and watch, let alone come up names for what comes out.

Abnormal property of meibomian secretion and dry eye syndrome

Gao Y et al, Yan Ke Xue Bao. 2007 Jun;23(2):121-5.

PURPOSE: To study the relationship between meibomian secretion and dry eye.

METHODS: To observe 68 outpatients (136 eyes) consecutively. Routine check up included vision, anterior segment and fundus, scoring of tear break up time (BUT), Schirmer I test and rose bengal staining (rb). Recorded the property of meibomian secretion. Defined the dry eye as mild and severe.

RESULTS: Meibomian secretion was sorted as egg-white-like secretion (n=28), milk-yellowish secretion (n=26), granular secretion (n=30) and toothpaste-like secretion (n=52). The result declared that BUT and rb scoring stepped up consecutively in the above secretions, that was higher in toothpaste-like secretion than in other groups (all P < 0.01). Schirmer I scoring was below 1 in all groups, and there was no difference in the groups. Fifty-four eyes (40%) met the criteria of dry eye syndrome. The incidence of dry eye stepped up in groups as egg-white-like secretion (2/28) 7.1%, milk-yellowish secretion (4/26) 15%, granular secretion (8/30) 27% and toothpaste-like secretion (40/52) 77%. The incidence was higher in granular secretion than in egg-white-like secretion (P < 0.05), while the incidence was higher in toothpaste-like secretion than in any of other 3 groups (P < 0.01). There was no severe dry eye in egg-white-like secretion and milk-yellowish secretion, while dry eye was found in 2 out of 8 in granular secretion, and in 19 out of 40 in toothpaste-like secretion. Incidence of severe dry eye was found higher in toothpaste-like secretion than in non toothpaste-like secretion (P < 0.05).

CONCLUSION: Abnormal meibomian secretion affects the stability of ocular surface. The patients with toothpaste-like secretion are prone to dry eye and tend to have a worse dry eye than other secretion groups.