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Ocular dryness assessment in Saudi employees working indoors and outdoors

Authors Fagehi R, Ghazal H, Alrabiah S, Abusharha A, Alanazi S, Alsaqr A, Masmali A

Received 21 January 2018

Accepted for publication 9 March 2018

Published 24 May 2018 Volume 2018:10 Pages 51—56


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Mr Simon Berry

Raied Fagehi,1 Hani Ghazal,2 Saad Alrabiah,2 Ali Abusharha,1 Saud Alanazi,1 Ali Alsaqr,1 Ali Masmali3

1Department of Optometry, College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; 2Ophthalmology Department, King Fahad Medical City, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; 3Cornea Research Chair, Department of Optometry, College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Objective: To investigate dry eye disease in Saudi employees working in indoor and outdoor environments.
Methods: A single-center randomized controlled study was carried out in an optometry clinic, to assess the ocular dryness of 24 male employees (12 indoor and 12 outdoor employees, mean age 36.4±2.5 years). The Ocular Surface Disease Index questionnaire was used to assess ocular dryness. Tear film assessment was carried out using phenol red thread (PRT), tear film osmolarity test, and fluorescein tears breakup time (FTBUT) with slit-lamp biomicroscopy.
Results: Both indoor and outdoor employees showed mild-to-moderate ocular dryness. A significant difference (P=0.004) was found for the tear quality test (FTBUT) between the indoor (8.58±4.8) and outdoor (5.54±1.3) employees. However, no significant differences for the tear quantity tests (tear osmolarity and PRT) between the indoor and outdoor employees were observed.
Conclusion: Dry eye cases were detected in both groups. This might be due to the hot dry environment in Riyadh and the use of air conditioners commonly used indoors. A significant difference was observed for the tear film stability, which might be due to the effect of environment and/or visual display unit use.

Keywords: tear film, ocular dryness, tear osmolarity, environment

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