The Dry Eye Zone

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Abstract: Tear meniscus & contacts

Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2009 Mar 11.
Lower volumes of tear menisci are associated with dry eye symptoms in contact lens wearers.
Chen Q, Wang J, Shen M, Cai C, Li J, Cui L, Qu J, Lu F.
School of Ophthalmology & Optometry, Wenzhou Medical College, Wenzhou, China.

Purpose: To investigate tear meniscus volumes during short-term wear by soft contact lens (SCL) wearers with dryness symptoms.

Methods: Three groups of 20 subjects were recruited. Group 1 consisted of SCL wearers with self-reported dryness. Group 2 consisted of asymptomatic wearers. Group 3 was composed of asymptomatic non-lens wearers. Contact lenses were fitted on each eye, and both upper and lower tear menisci were imaged before lens insertion, immediately afterwards, and 30 min later, using optical coherence tomography. Custom software was used to yield the tear meniscus area and then the volumes were calculated based on eyelid length. Repeatability was tested 30 min after lens wear on two consecutive days.

Results: There were no significant differences (P > 0.05) between the volumes measured at 30 min after lens insertion on two days. Additionally, the repeatability between days was similar among the groups. The upper and lower meniscus volumes were significantly lower in Group1 than either of the asymptomatic groups at baseline, immediately after insertion, and 30 min later (P < 0.05). The upper tear meniscus in Group 3 was greater than Group 2 at all times (P < 0.05). The lower meniscus volume immediately after insertion was significantly higher in Group 3, the inexperienced wearers, than Group 2; however, the volumes at baseline and 30 min later were similar to one another (P > 0.05).

Conclusions: Tear volumes in dry eye symptomatic wearers were lower than asymptomatic wearers at baseline and during lens wear, which possibly contributed to the dryness.