Ocular Surface Disease
What is Ocular Surface Disease?
Conditions that affect the cornea and conjunctiva are considered disorders of the ocular surface. Dry eye, blepharitis, epithelial basement membrane dystrophy, conjunctivochalasis, and ocular allergy are some of the most common ocular surface problems. Definitions:
- Dry Eye: excessive tear loss or inadequate production.
- Blepharitis: inflammation around the eyelashes and eyelid edge.
- Epithelial Basement Membrane Dystrophy: redundancies in surface cells of cornea.
- Conjunctivochalasis: loose and excessive tissue over the sclera.
- Ocular Allergy: excessive reaction to environmental stimulus, creating an itchy sensation around the eye.
How do I know if I have Ocular Surface Disease?
Most conditions related to ocular surface disease exhibit some degree of irritation or foreign body sensation. Redness, blurry vision, light sensitivity, and even tearing are not uncommon. An eye doctor usually diagnoses one or more of these conditions.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is a good idea to make an appointment.
What can be done to treat Ocular Surface Disease?
Treatment is tailored to the underlying cause of each condition. Medical therapy is usually enough for milder disease. Artificial tears are routinely helpful. Occasionally surgical treatment is warranted when conservative measures fail, including Superficial Keratectomy, the insertion of Punctal Plugs, or a Keratoprosthesis.