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Dr. James
Dr. James, Board Certified Ophthalmologist
Category: Eye
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Experience:  Eye Physician and Surgeon
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Followimg my previous question, is there no medication that

Resolved Question:

Followimg my previous question, is there no medication that will thin the waxy oil gland secretion to normal, or disslove it so that it doesn't foul or tack to the contact lens, please?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. James replied 6 years ago.

The tear film is a mixture of oils and watery secretions. For it to coat the eyes well, there needs a balance of the mixture. Often, dry eyes are due to a decrease in the watery secrections, thus causing a thickened tear film.

I recommend you supplement with an artificial tear. You can also use a medicine called Restasis which increases the watery secretions in your tears. Ask your ophthalmologist for a prescription.

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Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I understood from my optician that my problem was that because the oil glands were producing waxy material (not liquid at body temperature), there was not enough lipid of the right consistency to limit water loss off the lens, and the waxy plugs were fouling / adhering to the lens. Is there no way to stop the waxiness / increase the right lipid layer?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

I understood from my optician that my problem was the thickening of the secretions of the oil gland and clogging of some of them, so that the correct lipid layer was not present to slow down water evaporation from the lens, and that the waxy secretions were fouling and adhering to the contact lenses, and that I needed to add more lipid of the right sort. Could you comment, please?
Expert:  Dr. James replied 6 years ago.
If your oil glands are plugged up, treatment is first started with warm compresses to the eyelids. This will help soften the oil glands and help open them up. This will help up to a point. If the oil glands have been dysfunctional for a long time, then these warm compresses may have limited benefits. A medicine like tetracycline taken over months can help soften the secretions as well. That would be the next step of the warm compresses are not enough.

Additionally, flaxseed oil and omega-3 fatty acid has been shown to help as well. Refer to the link below for details. If you start on supplementation, notify your doctor before hand.

Edited by Dr. James on 11/8/2009 at 6:23 PM EST
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