Medicines to treat dry eyes

Dry eye is a condition in which the tear film is lacking, which can lead to damage to the surface of the eyeball, causing eye discomfort. So is there any medicine to treat this condition…Depending on the cause and degree of dry eye, there are many different treatments…

Artificial tears

Self-administered in mild to moderate dry eyes with no corneal damage. Artificial tears help hydrate, lubricate the eye surface and dilute inflammatory cytokines. In cases of severe lacrimation, high viscosity tears such as gels or ointments should be used to prolong protection. Ointments are very long-acting but often difficult to see, often reserved for moisturizing the eyes when sleeping at night. Eye drops are usually used 4 times a day, possibly more if needed. When using eye drops more than 6 times a day, it is advisable to choose one that does not contain preservatives. Avoid eye drops containing vasoconstrictors such as naphazolin, tetrahdrozoline, phenylephrine and oxymetazolin.


Taking fish oil or products containing a lot of omega 3 fatty acids (eicosapentaenoic acid, linoleic acid) helps reduce inflammation, reduce eye irritation. In addition, eye drops containing vitamin A have also shown effects in protecting the lipid membrane, reducing tear evaporation. In case of persistent dry eye discomfort, the patient should see an ophthalmologist and may be prescribed some of the following medications:

Anti-inflammatory drugs

On the one hand, dry eye often causes inflammation, on the other hand, inflammation of the ocular surface also interferes with the formation of a healthy tear layer. Many corticosteroid and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are used as anti-dry eye drops. Corticosteroids have strong anti-inflammatory effects, which have been used successfully in the treatment of corneal epithelial diseases caused by dry eyes in several clinical trials. However, corticosteroids are especially dangerous when used for a long time (more than 10 days, or repeated many times) because they can cause glaucoma and lead to blindness. .

A typical non-steroidal anti-inflammatory eye drop is diclofenac, which can be used for a longer period of time. Lifitegrast (xiidra) is also a new FDA-approved eye drop that acts on inflammation and is effective in treating dry eyes.


Bacteria can break down the lipid layer that protects the tear film, causing rapid dry eyes. In addition to anti-infective effects, tetracyclines also have anti-inflammatory effects, thus effective in the treatment of inflammatory conditions, dry eyes.

The tetracyclines also inhibit angiogenesis useful in the treatment of ocular rosacea (an inflammatory condition that causes redness, burning, and itching of the eyes). Doxycycline, a long-acting tetracycline derivative, is not effective in the treatment of rosacea and corneal ulcers. infections even at doses below the bactericidal dose. Doxycycline helps to reduce the breakdown of the mucous layer of tears, and also inhibits the increased production of inflammatory factors caused by dry eyes. It also improves the uniformity and barrier function of the corneal surface. Only use antibiotics within 7-10 days.


For more severe conditions, topical immunomodulators such as cyclosporin A (CsA) eye drops may be needed. CsA improves signs and symptoms of dry eye by reducing T-lymphocyte infiltration into the conjunctiva and reducing inflammatory cytokine levels in tears.

Autologous plasma eye drops

In particularly severe cases of dry eye unresponsive to normal artificial tears, the use of autologous plasma for eye drops improves dry eye 4-6 weeks after treatment. Autologous plasma is prepared by centrifugation of the patient’s own venous blood and reconstituted with isotonic saline. Growth factors in autologous plasma aid in epithelial healing.

Ophthalmic procedures

Severe dry eye with corneal complications may require procedures such as occlusion of the lacrimal septum… In cases of very severe dry eye secondary to ocular surface disease (eg, chemical burns, Stevens syndrome) -Johnson disease, or autoimmune bullous pempigus, which causes scarring of the eyeball), may require amniotic corneal transplantation, pterygium suture, corneal transplantation, corneal margin stem cell transplantation, or even the use of use of implantable ophthalmic devices such as rigid scleral contact lenses to help restore vision. In very severe cases of dry eye, surgical intervention can be used to treat the specific cause.

Non-drug measures

Patients with dry eyes can put a humidifier in the room to increase the humidity of the air, to keep the tears from evaporating so that the eyes are more comfortable. Wear dustproof goggles or use an air purifier to avoid eye irritation. Avoid sources of allergies and smoke. While reading or watching TV, pay attention to blinking often, pausing every 5-10 minutes, closing your eyes for 10 seconds to rest, moisturize and feel more comfortable.

Placing warm compresses on the eyelids and gently massaging the eyelids with washing the eyelids helps to increase the thickness of the tear lipid layer, especially in patients with blepharoplasty, ocular rosacea or blepharitis. The temperature in the warm compress and massage help the oil in the sebaceous glands to flow more easily, and washing the eyelashes helps to remove bacteria that can break down lipids.

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