On the pulse: IPL therapy's role in treating meibomian gland dysfunction

19 August 2022
Summer 2022

Evaporative dry eye resulting from meibomian gland dysfunction has been difficult to treat, writes Kim Thomas. But intense pulsed light therapy is being increasingly deployed to tackle it. So does it really work?

Domains covered

Communication Clinical practice

Meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD), also known as posterior lid margin disease, is caused by posterior blepharitis. Bacterial lipases break down meibomian lipids, causing meibomian secretions to become both chemically and physically abnormal. The result is an unstable tear film causing dry eye symptoms of irritation, redness and blurred vision. MGD is common, with a pooled prevalence of 35.8%, though men are more prone to the condition than women, and it is more prevalent in people of Arab, Asian or Hispanic origin (Hassanzadeh et al, 2021). The unpleasantness of the symptoms can affect the mental health of patients with MGD, who may experience crying spells, sleep disturbance and depressed appetite (Wei et al, 2022).

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