Dry eye syndrome is one of the most common conditions treated by eye physicians. Deficient eye moistening glands around the eye result in lack of proper ocular surface hydration.
Dry eye patients experience itching, burning, redness and reflex tearing. Untreated this dry eye could result in infections, scarring and poor vision.
While topical replenishing lubricants help most of the time patient sometime require additional treatment.
The canaliculi are eyelid structures that drain the excess tearing produced by the eye. It is possible to occlude the canaliculi with small devices called “Punctum Plugs”. Once applied punctum plugs work like closing a sink drain with a stopper. By preventing tears from draining punctum plugs keeping the eyes moist.
Punctum plugs can be temporary (dissolvable collagen punctum plugs) or longer lasting (silicone punctum plugs).
Should lubricants and punctum plugs fail to give sufficient relief, a prescription medication called “Restasis” may be useful. This medication works by minimizing the effects produced by dry eye without necessarily restoring full tear film levels. Patients use Restasis for about one month prior experiencing a benefit. Restasis works in about 80% of users.