Tears play a very important role for the normal functioning of the eye. They moisturize the eye surface and prevent its excessive dryness, ensure proper corneal metabolism, remove waste products from the cornea and residual substances from the eye surfaces, they are responsible for 60% of the eye refractive strength (more than the lens itself), and substances diluted in tears have antibacterial properties and prevent eye surface infections. Tears cover the eye surface, creating a three-layer tear film.

Problems stemming from tear deficiency and/or disturbed composition of tears are defined as the dry eye syndrome (DES).

The dry eye syndrome (the so called “dry eye”) is a very frequent condition and can be observed in ca. 30% of adults.

DES occurs particularly frequently in people over 40, since at that time the amount of tears produced starts to decrease gradually. Moreover, in perimenopausal women the amount of tears produced drops considerably due to estrogen deficiency. DES can also be caused by drugs such as contraceptives or diuretics.

There are also external environmental causes of DES such as: prolonged work at the computer, television watching, reading, air contamination, e.g. by nicotine smoke, air dryness in air-conditioned or centrally heated rooms.

The most common of symptoms of DES include the following: foreign body sensation in the eye, burning sensation of the eye surface, itching of the eyelid margins or under the eyelids, piercing sensation in the eye, etc. The basic treatment method for DES involves elimination or reduction of the root cause of DES and the use of preparations lubricating the eye surface, i.e. the so called artificial tears.

The basic treatment method for the dry eye syndrome involves the use of artificial tears preparations.

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