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Evaluating tear clearance rate with optical coherence tomography

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posted on 2023-11-30, 17:56 authored by Izabela K. Garaszczuk, Maryam Mousavi, Alejandro Cervino Exposito, Maciej M. Bartuzel, Robert Montes-Mico, D. Robert Iskander
Purpose: To assess the early-phase of tear clearance rate (TCR) with anterior segment optical coherence tomography (OCT) and to determine the association between TCR and other clinical measures of the tear film in a group of young subjects with different levels of tear film quality. Methods: TCR was classified as the percentage decrease of the inferior tear meniscus height 30s after instillation of 5uL 0.9% saline solution. Fifty subjects (32F and 18M) aged (mean +/- standard deviation) 25.5 +/- 4.3 years volunteered for the study. It consisted of a review of medical history, Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI) questionnaire, tear film osmolarity measurements, slit lamp examination and TCR estimation based on dynamic measurements of the lower tear meniscus with OCT. Estimates of TCR were contrasted against subject age and tear film measures commonly used for dry eye diagnosis, which includes OSDI score, fluorescein tear film break-up time (FBUT), tear meniscus height (TMH), blinking frequency, tear film osmolarity and corneal staining. Results: The group mean TCR was 29 +/- 13% and 36 +/- 19% respectively after 30 and 60 s margin after saline solution instillation. Statistically significant correlations were found between TCR and FBUT (r2=0.319, p<0.001), blinking frequency (r2=0.138, p<0.01), tear film osmolarity (r2=0.133, p<0.01) and age (r2=0.095, p<0.05). Conclusions: Anterior segment optical coherence tomography allows following changes of tear meniscus morphology post saline solution instillation and evaluating the TCR. OCT based TCR might be used as additional measure of the lacrimal functional unit.

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