Article discusses the importance of diagnosis, treatment, and patient communication in the treatment of dry eye disease
An April 15, 2016 Ophthalmology Times article by Paul S. Koch, MD, “3 steps to improve ocular health of dry eye patients,” provides an overview of the current diagnostic, treatment, and communication strategies for clinicians treating patients with dry eye disease. Dr. Koch notes that contemporary physicians have a wide array of tools at their disposal to treat dry eye, which, if implemented correctly, can lead to greater overall patient satisfaction.
Dr. Koch identifies comprehensive patient history and tear osmolarity testing to be two of the most important diagnostic tools relating to dry eye disease. After a patient’s osmolarity has been determined, there are a variety of treatment options available for those with dry eye symptoms. Dr. Koch begins with two topical drop medications; if these fail to provide sufficient relief, temporary punctum plugs, such as the Comfortear® Lacrisolve™ 180 Absorbable Punctum Plugs, are inserted. Punctum plugs may provide relief to dry eye sufferers and are also an important preoperative tool used to optimize tear film stability and enhance postoperative outcomes. If neither topical drops nor punctal plugs resolve the patient’s dry eye symptoms, then an agent such as cyclosporine ophthalmic emulsion or one containing omega fatty acids is attempted to stimulate gland production.
Finally, Dr. Koch recommends maintaining clear, comprehensible communication with the patient throughout the diagnostic and treatment process. In conjunction with improved diagnostic tools and a wider array of treatment options, establishing good patient communication facilitates more efficient—and more effective—treatment.
To read the full article, visit Ophthalmology Times.
Paul S. Koch, MD, is chief surgeon at Koch Eye Associates and serves as chief medical officer of Claris Vision.
Paragon BioTeck, Inc., has developed a line of absorbable and non-absorbable punctum plugs to provide occlusion therapy to treat symptoms associated with dry eye disease that may result from allergies, cataracts, or contact lens intolerance. Patients who are unsure about whether occlusion therapy is right for them should talk with their eye doctor.