A new thermographic imaging device enables doctors to reliably measure ocular surface temperature in testing for dry eyes. The prospective study included 30 eyes in patients diagnosed with dry eye disease. Compared to the control group the investigators found that central corneal temperature decreased more significantly in the dry eye patients after 10 seconds of keeping their eyes open. The decreased temperature correlated strongly with tear break-up time. Dry eye patients have unstable tear film that breaks up and evaporates at a faster rate than normal patients. This evaporization may explain the decrease in ocular temperature in these eyes. Dr Ashraf, medical director of the Atlanta Vision Institute, adds that it would be interesting to measure thermography in patients after LASIK surgery, since LASIK can alter the ocular tear film after surgery.
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