Dry Eye Disease and Impact on Vision Health
Dry Eye Disease (DED) is on the rise, yet the research to find new treatments for the condition remains underfunded, says Dr. David Sullivan, founder of the Tear Film & Ocular Surface Society (TFOS). Experts gathered for a briefing in Washington, D.C. on July 12 to discuss the upcoming TFOS Dry Eye Workshop II (TFOS DEWS II™) report which will be released in The Ocular Surface journal in late July.
Dr. Paul Karpecki, moderator of the briefing says, “increased computer screen time” has played a role in the increased prevalence of dry eye disease. Epidemiologist Dr. Susan Vitale said other risk factors for developing dry eye include sex, age, and use of contact lenses. Dr. Janine Austin-Clayton noted that women are more likely to be affected, with 3.23 million suffering from the disease, compared to 1.68 million men in the United States. Dr. Clayton stressed that increased federal funding for research is needed to better understand the disease. “You only realize that your eyes make tears all the time when they aren’t making tears," she added. July is Dry Eye Awareness Month.
Caitlin Grzeskowiak is a Research!America Communications Intern.