Dry eye and meibomian gland disease (MGD) of the eyelid margins is a common cause of eye discomfort. These conditions also make the measurements for cataract surgery less accurate. Your doctor may recommend that you undergo a Lipiscan/Dry eye assessment in which the state of tear film is assessed along with the health of the meibomian glands in your eyelids. The meibomian glands secrete a thin layer of lipid which covers the tear film, delaying evaporation of tears. Therefore, when MGD is significant, patients experience dry eye and discomfort.
The Lipiscan investigation allows us to image the number and health of meibomian glands in the eyelid. In some patients where the meibomian gland secretions are too viscous and obstruct the gland openings, your doctor may recommend treatment with Hot compresses and lid margin cleansing. In more severe cases, the Lipiflow device is useful in applying heated compression like a massage to the eyelids. The heat softens the secretions which are then expressed out from the glands and reduces the gland congestion and inflammation.