Boston 1 of 10 clinical sites in U.S. to introduce FDA approved effective technology for Dry Eye Sufferers

December 16, 2011 (PRLEAP.COM) Health News
A new treatment for dry eye and meibomian gland dysfunction, LipiFlow® Thermal Pulsation (TearScience, Inc.: Morrisville, NC) approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) July 11, 2011, is introduced in Boston, one of 10 clinical sites in the U.S. to make the dry eye treatment available.

LipiFlow® technology improves the lipid composition of eyelid oil gland secretions and restores a healthy tear film by opening blocked glands through a non-invasive heat energy and mechanical application,. The safety and efficacy of the technology was demonstated in a U.S.-based, nine-center randomized FDA trial. "For many patients who struggle daily to manage their dry eye symptoms, LipiFlow provides results lasting 6-15 months after one office-based treatment, saving time and energy spent with artificial tear drops and warm compresses," said Dr. Ernest Kornmehl, a Wellesley-based Refractive Surgeon and Dry Eye specialist and spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology, who is among the first 10 U.S. clinicians chosen to offer LipiFlow® treatment to patients as TearScience proceeds with commercialization. " It's an important addition to our armamentarium of dry eye therapeutics—-many have the type of symptoms and cause that are likely to benefit."

Over 65 million people suffer from dry eye syndrome, characterized by eye irritation and burning, redness, fluctuating visual disturbance and clouding, and eye fatigue. LipiFlow® technology is a significant clinical advance beyond partially effective, therapeutic eye drops and compresses requiring frequent application that are time-consuming for dry eye sufferers. The technology is appropriate for evaporative dry eye syndrome, affecting 65 percent of dry eye patients, which results from a lipid deficiency in the eye's natural tear film and meibomian gland dysfunction. The thermal pulsation technology works to counter obstructed oil glands and is designed for in-office delivery.

Often, patients notice reduced dependence on drops and symptom relief within three-four weeks of treatment with a durable response lasting 6-15 months.

Post-menopausal women, contact lens wearers, people who take medications such as oral contraceptives, anti-hypertensives, anti-histamines, and anti-depressants, the aged, and people engaged in computer screen use for long durations are at risk for disturbances in the natural tear film production. Meibomian gland dysfunction, often the culprit of dry eye in these at-risk populations, is an under-estimated syndrome and the most frequent cause of dry eye symptoms. TearScience markets a LipiView® system enabling physicians to assess the lipid component of the tear film, enhancing diagnosis of the cause of dry eye in symptomatic patients and selecting those whom are likely to receive benefit from intervention with LipiFlow®.