Blepharitis is an inflammation of the eyelids. It usually affects the edges (margins) of the eyelids. This condition is from a bacterial infestation of the eyelashes. Blepharitis usually results from poor eyelid hygiene, a low-grade bacterial infection or irregular functioning of the oil gland. Blepharitis is classically presented with crusty exudates on the lashes of the eye lids commonly referred to as almost dandruff like flakes. Common side effects of blepharitis are styes and chalazia. This results when the bacterial debris clogs the pores of the eyelids and causes the glandular secretions to back up. Other symptoms include feeling that something is in the eye when blinking, itching, burning, sensitivity to light and irritation of the skin at the lid margin.
Plugged Meibomian Glands:
Meibomian gland disease (MGD) refers to the condition where the glands are not secreting enough oil or when the oil they secrete is of poor quality. Often, the oil gland openings get plugged up causing less oil to come out of the glands. The oil that does make it out of the glands can be granular (crusty) or otherwise abnormal, and can cause irritation.
To detect MGD a simple technique our doctors can do is apply pressure to the eyelid and thereby express the contents of the meibomian gland. A tool such as the paddle can help increase efficiency. After a few seconds of applying pressure to the eyelid there should be meibum excreting from the glands. Oil that is clear with little color indicates healthy meibomian glands. Thick or discolored meibum indicates MGD, proceeding with the expression can be a viable treatment option if MGD is found.
The LipiView is a non-invasive device that is used to get an accurate digital picture of a patient’s tear film. This instrument is also used in the measurement of the lipid content and quality. The LipiView analysis is vital in detecting the level of a patient’s dry eyes. Our Calgary eye doctors use this eye evaluation to get a better view of the patient’s film production. The LipiView also images your blinking and measures how many of your blinks are complete versus incomplete.
To determine if a patient has dry eye or what the severity of the dry eyes are, Our doctors need to do a lid evaluation. Some of the things we do or check for includes: