The Dry Eye Zone

Rebecca's Blog

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Abstract: New diagnostic - Ocular Surface Thermographer

Who woulda thunk. Very interesting. So a dry eye cools off faster than a healthy eye when you're holding it open. And this decrease "correlated significantly" with TBUT - but presumably not Schirmer I and staining.

Screening for Dry Eye with Newly Developed Ocular Surface Thermographer.

PURPOSE: To evaluate the newly developed Ocular Surface Thermographer (TOMEY Corporation) for dry eye screening.

DESIGN: Prospective, controlled study.

METHODS: We studied 30 eyes of 30 patients diagnosed with dry eye (mean age ± standard deviation, 52.9 ± 17.1 years) and 30 eyes of 30 normal subjects (42.7 ± 17.0 years). The ocular surface temperature was measured immediately after eye opening and every second during 10 seconds of eye opening. The reliability of the measurements was determined by calculating intraclass correlation coefficients. Then, the correlations between the change in the ocular surface temperature and tear film break-up time, Schirmer I test values, and fluorescein staining scores were determined.

RESULTS: The measurements of the ocular surface temperature had a high degree of reliability. Immediately after eye opening, the temperature in the dry eye did not differ significantly from that in normal eyes in any of the 3 regions tested. The decrease in the ocular surface temperature in dry eyes was significantly greater than that in normal eyes (P < .001) at 10 seconds after eye opening. The decrease in the temperature of the cornea was correlated significantly with the tear film break-up time (r = -0.572; P < .001). When the changes in ocular surface temperature of the cornea were used as an index for dry eye, the sensitivity was 0.83 and the specificity was 0.80 after 10 seconds.

CONCLUSIONS: Measurements of the ocular surface temperature obtained with our newly developed Ocular Surface Thermographer after 10 seconds of eye opening may provide a simple, noninvasive screening test for dry eyes.


Am J Ophthalmol. 2011 Feb 16. [Epub ahead of print]
Kamao T, Yamaguchi M, Kawasaki S, Mizoue S, Shiraishi A, Ohashi Y.
Department of Ophthalmology, Medicine of Sensory Function, Ehime University Graduate School of Medicine, Toon, Japan.
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