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Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation improves dry eye symptoms in patients with glaucoma: results of a prospective multicenter study

Authors Kaya A, AKSOY Y

Received 27 April 2016

Accepted for publication 28 April 2016

Published 18 May 2016 Volume 2016:10 Pages 911—912

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/OPTH.S111473

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser

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Abdullah Kaya,1 Yakup Aksoy2

1Department of Ophthalmology, Anittepe Military Dispensary, Ankara, Turkey; 2Department of Ophthalmology, Girne Military Hospital, Girne, Cyprus

We read the article entitled “Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation improves dry eye symptoms in patients with glaucoma: results of a prospective multicenter study” by Tellez-Vazquez, with great interest.1 The authors found omega-3 fatty acid supplementation to have very beneficial effects on symptoms and clinical findings of dry eye. We appreciate the authors’ well-organized study that contained a large number of participants.
Findings in this study show the importance of diet in dry eye syndrome. As a result of industrialization, natural eating habits have changed. Refined foods make up a large part of the diet. Thus, deficiency of essential molecules such as omega-3 is unavoidable. Elderly people especially, may have more deficiency because of potential absorption problems. Omega-3 is important for cell membrane stabilization and health of neural cells.2 Deficiency of omega-3 may have a significant role in dry eye, more than estimated. We suggest that supplementation of omega-3 should be recommended to chronic dry eye patients.

View original paper by Tellez-Vazquez.


Dear editor

We read the article entitled “Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation improves dry eye symptoms in patients with glaucoma: results of a prospective multicenter study” by Tellez-Vazquez, with great interest.1 The authors found omega-3 fatty acid supplementation to have very beneficial effects on symptoms and clinical findings of dry eye. We appreciate the authors’ well-organized study that contained a large number of participants.

Findings in this study show the importance of diet in dry eye syndrome. As a result of industrialization, natural eating habits have changed. Refined foods make up a large part of the diet. Thus, deficiency of essential molecules such as omega-3 is unavoidable. Elderly people especially, may have more deficiency because of potential absorption problems. Omega-3 is important for cell membrane stabilization and health of neural cells.2 Deficiency of omega-3 may have a significant role in dry eye, more than estimated. We suggest that supplementation of omega-3 should be recommended to chronic dry eye patients.

Disclosure

The authors report no conflicts of interest in this communication.


References

1.

Tellez-Vazquez J. Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation improves dry eye symptoms in patients with glaucoma: results of a prospective multicenter study. Clin Ophthalmol. 2016;10:617–626.

2.

Bhargava R, Kumar P, Phogat H, Kaur A, Kumar M. Oral omega-3 fatty acids treatment in computer vision syndrome related dry eye. Cont Lens Anterior Eye. 2015;38(3):206–210.

Author’s reply

Jesús Tellez-Vazquez

On behalf of the Dry Eye In Glaucoma Study Group (DEIGSG)

Glaucoma Section, Ophthalmology Department, Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, Barcelona, Spain

Correspondence: Jesús Tellez-Vazquez, Glaucoma Section, Ophthalmology Department, Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, C/Sant Antoni M Claret 167, E-08025 Barcelona, Spain, Tel +34 93 291 9000, Email [email protected]

Dear editor

We appreciate very much the supportive and appreciative comments of Drs Kaya and Aksoy regarding the benefits of dietary supplementation with polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) for improving dry eye symptoms, in this particular case, in patients with glaucoma using topical antihypertensive drugs. Based on a number of clinical studies on the same topic previously published in the literature, there is sufficient evidence for insistently recommending supplementation with omega-3 PUFA in patients with chronic dry eye symptoms, mainly in those not fully satisfied with the use of artificial tears free of conservatives. In intervention trials, both open-label studies with a large population of patients with dry eye symptoms,1 and in controlled trials with smaller samples of patients presenting with dry eye syndrome either due to refractive surgery2 or other causes,3,4 as well as in patients with primary open-angle glaucoma5 suffering from dry eye symptoms related to the chronic use of topical antiglaucoma medications, statistically significant improvements of dry eye signs and symptoms were consistently found in the supplemented group as compared to nonsupplemented patients or healthy controls. Moreover, the expression of cytokine markers in reflex tear samples was also significantly reduced in the supplementation group. These results have also been replicated in a double blind placebo-controlled trial in patients with dry eye symptoms due to meibomian gland dysfunction.6 A statistically significant improvement in health-related quality of life7 among patients in the supplemented group versus controls was another remarkable finding of the trial. These observations are clinically relevant and have direct practical implications, since oral supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids has been demonstrated to be an effective and advantageous option for the relief of persistent and annoying symptoms of dry eye in a variety of ophthalmological settings.

Disclosure

The author reports no conflicts of interest in this communication.


References

1.

Oleñik A. Effectiveness and tolerability of dietary supplementation with a combination of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and antioxidants in the treatment of dry eye symptoms: results of a prospective study. Clin Ophthalmol. 2014;8:169–176.

2.

Ong NH, Purcell TL, Roch-Levecq AC, et al. Epithelial healing and visual outcomes of patients using Omega-3 oral nutritional supplements before and after photorefractive keratectomy: a pilot study. Cornea. 2013;32(6):761–765.

3.

Kangari H, Eftekhari MH, Sardari S, et al. Short-term consumption of oral omega-3 and dry eye syndrome. Ophthalmology. 2013;120(11):2191–2196.

4.

Pinazo-Duran MD, Galbis-Estrada C, Pons-Vazquez S, et al. Effects of a Nutraceutical formulation based on the combination of antioxidants and ω-3 essential fatty acids in the expression of inflammation and immune response mediators in tears from patients with dry eye disorders. Clin Interv Aging. 2013;8:139–148.

5.

Galbis-Estrada C, Pinazo-Duran MD, Cantu-Dibildox J, et al. Patients undergoing long-term treatment with antihypertensive eye drops responded positively with respect to their ocular surface disorder to oral supplementation with antioxidants and essential fatty acids. Clin Interv Aging. 2013;8:711–719.

6.

Oleñik A, Jiménez-Alfaro I, Alejandre-Alba N, Mahillo-Fernández I. A randomized, double-masked study to evaluate the effect of omega-3 fatty acids supplementation in meibomian gland dysfunction. Clin Interv Aging. 2013;8:1133–1138.

7.

Oleñik A, Jiménez-Alfaro I, Alejandre-Alba N, et al. Benefits of omega-3 fatty acid dietary supplementation on health-related quality of life in patients with meibomian gland dysfunction. Clin Ophthalmol. 2014;8:831–836.

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