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Dry Eye Treatments At The Eye Institute Of Austin

The eyes depend on a continuous layer of tears to keep them healthy. Dry Eye Disease is called if the tear film becomes unstable due to underlying changes.

According to Austin eye associates, there are many ways to relieve dry eye symptoms. Often, changing medications or adding oral supplements can provide relief. In addition, in-office procedures like BlephEx and iLux help with the underlying causes of Dry Eye Disease.

Artificial Tears

Artificial tears can be a great way to hydrate your eyes. They contain lubricating ingredients that keep your eye moist and supple. They also have a film-forming component to relieve burning and itching and provide a protective shield. The FDA has approved several brands of these products.

Propylene Glycol is a demulcent and increases the product’s viscosity. Erythritol is a humectant that draws water from the air into the tear film to promote hydration. Some ointments and gels stay on the eye longer, requiring more time and causing blurry vision.

If a particular drop type doesn’t provide adequate relief, your doctor may suggest trying another brand or switching to a preservative-free product. If this doesn’t work, your doctor will try to determine what is causing the dry eye and treat that condition.

Punctal Occlusion

Punctal occlusion is one of the oldest and most effective treatments for dry eyes. It involves using punctual plugs inserted into the tiny openings on the top and bottom of your eyelids called the lacrimal puncta. These plugs block the tears from exiting through these puncta, so they stay on the ocular surface longer to improve wetting.

Research has shown that this simple procedure significantly relieves subjective symptoms and improves ocular surface indices in dry eye patients refractory to standard practice.

During the procedure, your doctor will insert temporary plugs that dissolve within seven days. These serve as a test to determine whether or not you would benefit from permanent punctuation plugs. This is an in-office treatment that can be performed very quickly and comfortably.

If you do not benefit from temporary punctual occlusion, your doctor may suggest permanent punctual plugs made of bioabsorbable collagen sponge or silicone rubber. These plugs are biocompatible and made of inert materials that are safe to remain in the eye for long periods of time.

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL)

IPL therapy uses light to treat scarring, sun spots, vascular lesions, fine lines and wrinkles, unwanted hair, and pigmented areas. IPL is a safe, non-invasive treatment.

Unlike common dry eye treatments such as artificial tears, warm compresses, and eyelid wipes, IPL therapy addresses the root cause of DES: meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD). MGD occurs when the oil-producing glands become clogged with hardened secretions, preventing the evaporation of the tear film. This condition may lead to a painful stye (chalazion) when left untreated.

IPL therapy has improved MGD by reducing inflammatory biomarkers associated with the condition. In addition, IPL combined with meibomian gland expression (MGX) significantly improved dry eye symptoms in a study published in Cornea. Rolando Toyos, MD, discovered this treatment technique and was provided a fee for consulting and medical-technical input into the patient study. Patients were provided a series of IPL/MGX treatments at four- to six-week intervals.


Meibography is an image-based diagnostic tool that reveals the structure of your meibomian glands. It is a critical component of evaluating patients with dry eyes, as it helps Austin eye associates determine if you are suffering from evaporative or aqueous-  A specialized camera records the transillumination that a contact lens or handheld device applies to the everted lower eyelid during contact meibography —deficient dry eyes.

A specialized camera records the transillumination that a contact lens or handheld device applies to the everted lower eyelid during contact meibography. While traditional statistical techniques have explored broad, global assessments of meibomian glands, such as percent area of atrophy or an ameibomian software-based score, local morphological features such as gland length and tortuosity have received less attention.

Portable non-contact IR meibography is a growing field that offers the potential to identify crucial meibomian gland morphological features independent of subject demographics. Moreover, machine learning models trained with de-identified meibography images can reconstruct some demographic characteristics of the exposed model. Using this capability, we can develop better biography-based clinical algorithms that incorporate the effects of demographics on the glands’ morphology.

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