A variety of causes, a variety of treatments.
Dry eye is no fun
Dry eye is a condition that has a variety of causes, but in many cases it starts with your tear film becoming inadequate at protecting your eyes from the environment. You might notice your air conditioner or heater drying out your eyes. You might have more obvious signs like burning, itching, or the inability to read or watch television for long.
Dry eye could be a result of your natural aging process, especially menopause, or a side effect of certain drugs like antihistamines or antihypertensives. Or it could be a symptom of a disease that affects your eyes’ ability to make tears, such as:
- Sjogren’s syndrome.
- Rheumatoid arthritis.
- Collagen vascular diseases.
Start with a proper diagnosis
Come see one of our ophthalmologists if your eyes are dry and painful so we can determine if you have dry eye. We’ll work with you to figure out how to properly alleviate your dry eyes so you can get back to doing the things you love.
There are a variety of treatment options and many new therapies we can use. We can use eye drops, oral medications or even in-office procedures depending on your situation.
In some cases of dry eye, your tear duct system (lacrimal system) might make too many tears to relieve the irritation, called reflex tearing or lacrimation, leading to overflowing tears, called epiphora.
If your lacrimal system is involved, you may need LipiFlow, a device that unclogs blocked glands on your eyelids. You may need temporary punctal plugs to block the punctum, which is the opening of the tear drainage system.
Or the cause of your dry eyes may be nasolacrimal duct obstruction (NLDO), canalicular stenosis or unctal stenosis. The cause could be an infection in the drainage system like canaliculitis or dacryocystitis.
To treat an infection or blockage, the best course may include surgery. Your surgical specialist may perform a dacrocystorhinostomy (DCR), conjunctivodacryocystorhinostomy (CDCR), punctoplasty or canalicular surgery, which may involve the placement of a small silicone or glass tube. In some cases, eyelid malposition contributes to poor tear drainage, and we may perform surgery to repair this.
Each surgery has its own distinct procedures, so our staff will work with you beforehand to ensure you understand everything, including your recovery care.
We customize every step of your treatment for your unique situation. If you’re suffering from dry eye, make an appointment today so we diagnose you properly and treat you quickly. It’s time for you to move forward and not look back.
Dry Eye Care
Dr. Scott Hauswirth OD, Optometrist | UCHealth
Make an appointment at one of our Eye Centers
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