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Dr. M.K. Randhawa

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Dry eye disease affects reading in the elderly

Dry eyes and aging

A recent study published in the October 2013 issue of The British Journal of Ophthalmology looked at whether dry eye disease impacts reading in elderly people. The study found that self-reported reading difficulty was greater in elderly patients with dry eye syndrome. Reading speed was unaffected.

This study quantifies what eye doctors commonly observe in the clinic: people with dry eye often complain of difficulty reading. The reason is that the tear film of the eye plays an important role in allowing the eye to focus light in order to have clear vision. Many people with dry eye disease have an unhealthy tear film which causes their vision to be blurry.

This is yet another study on the they negative impact that dry eye disease can have on quality of life. Effective treatments are available for dry eye syndrome but not every treatment is appropriate for every patient. It is important to get appropriate recommendations from your eye doctor after a thorough eye examination and special testing related to your eyes tear film and the functioning the the glands that make and regulate tears.

Source:
Impact of Dry Eye on Reading in a Population Based Sample of the Elderly: The Salisbury Eye Evaluation Br J Ophthalmol 2013 Oct 11;[EPub Ahead of Print], SW van Landingham, SK West, EK Akpek, B Muñoz, PY Ramulu

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