Combined low level light therapy and intense pulsed light therapy for the treatment of meibomian gland dysfunction
Received 27 April 2019
Accepted for publication 21 May 2019
Published 11 June 2019 Volume 2019:13 Pages 993—999
Checked for plagiarism Yes
Review by Single-blind
Peer reviewers approved by Dr Colin Mak
Peer reviewer comments 2
Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser
Karl Stonecipher,1 Thomas G Abell,2 Bennett Chotiner,3 Erik Chotiner,3 Rick Potvin4
1Physicians Protocol, Greensboro, NC, USA; 2Abell Eyes, Lexington, KY, USA; 3Memorial Eye Institute, Harrisburg, PA, USA; 4Science in Vision, Akron, NY, USA
Purpose: To evaluate the effects of combined intense pulsed light therapy (IPL) and low-level light therapy (LLLT) on clinical measures of dry eye related to severe meibomian gland disease (MGD) in subjects unresponsive to previous medical management.
Patients and Methods: This was a retrospective chart review of patients treated by 4 physicians at 3 centers. All patients were documented treatment failures with traditional pharmaceutical therapy. They all had their MGD evaluated before treatment using a grading scale (0–4), tear breakup time in seconds and the Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI) questionnaire. To be included, all patients had to have had a short course of adjunct pharmaceutical or device-related therapy, along with a combined IPL/LLLT treatment. As well, a second MGD evaluation with the same three measures had to have been conducted 1–3 months post treatment.
Results: A total of 460 eyes of 230 patients were identified for inclusion in the data set. Mean OSDI scores were significantly lower after treatment; 70.4% of patients had pretreatment OSDI scores indicative of dry eye; this dropped to 29.1% of patients after treatment. A 1-step or greater reduction in MGD grading was observed in 70% of eyes, with 28% of eyes having a 2-step or greater reduction. Tear breakup time was ≤6 seconds in 86.7% of eyes pretreatment, dropping to 33.9% of eyes after treatment. There were no ocular or facial adverse events or side effects related to the combined light treatment.
Conclusion: The use of combined IPL/LLLT for the treatment of severe MGD appears to be beneficial in patients who have failed topical and/or systemic therapy.
Keywords: LLLT, low level light therapy, IPL, intense pulsed light, meibomian gland dysfunction, ocular surface disease index
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