Lipiscan & Lipiflow

What is Meibomian Gland Disease?

Meibomian Gland Dysfunction or Disease (MGD) is inflammation of the meibomian glands of the eyelids and one of the leading causes of Dry Eye Disease. The meibomian glands produce the meibum that makes up the oily or lipid layer of your tear film. The meibum coats your eyes and prevents the muco-aqueous or watery layer of your tears from evaporating. It is the windbreaker of your eyes. If your glands are obstructed by skin bacteria or debris or makeup or prevented from functioning physiologically with poor blink such as with long durations of computer or tablet or phone use, then the meibomian glands cannot secrete the meibum to properly protect your eyes. Without the meibum or oily layer of your tear film, you glands slowly degenerate and die. We cannot regenerate the glands once they are gone. Would you wait to treat glaucoma until you had lost all of your vision? NO! So why wait to treat your meibomian glands until they all atrophy and you have horrible dry eye disease from it. Contact Our Dry Eye Center today to get a full dry eye evaluation at Eye Doctor MD.

What are the causes of poor blink?

With our current high use of technology (computers, phones, tablets), our brains decrease our blink rate and our eyes dry out. The meibomian glands are designed to secrete oil when the upper and lower eyelids touch. If you are having half blinks from working on the computer or phone too much, the meibomian glands are not able to secrete oil as they are supposed to and will slowly degenerate and die. There are also medical reasons for decreased blink including Parkinson’s disease and other neurological conditions.

What is the Lipiscan and LipiFlow System?

The Lipiscan is an in-office diagnostic test that images the meibomian or oil glands in your eyelids. When you schedule a dry eye evaluation at our Richmond Ophthalmology office, Dr. Pradhan will grade the quantity and quality of your meibomian glands on the Lipiscan as well as thru an examination of the glands and let you know how they are functioning, along with other diagnostic tests for dry eye disease.

If the meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD) is contributing to your dry eye disease, options for treatment of MGD include:

  • Daily warm compresses for 10 min (EyeEco’s DERM mask recommended – available in office)
  • Oral omega-3s (to help increase the quantity and quality of your meibum)
  • Consider oral doxycycline (antibiotics)
  • Consider Avenova
  • Help normalize your blink response with blinking exercises
  • Consider the LipiFlow procedure
  • Consider the IPL procedure

Although some of these treatments can be done at home, it is best to visit your eye doctor so they can give you the correct analysis of your Dry Eye Disease and properly inform you of the best route to take to improve your meibomian gland function.

What is Lipiflow

The LipiFlow procedure is the only FDA approved electronic device to treat the leading cause of dry eye disease which is Meibomian Gland Dysfunction by using Thermal Pulsation technology. Lipiflow is a 12 minute in-office procedure that helps to restore the meibum layer of your tear film. Depending on the condition of your eyes, Dr. Pradhan may additionally recommend the BlephEx procedure or the IPL procedure if those are indicated based on your eye exam. The LipiFlow procedure is recommended once a year if you have MGD.

Visit Richmond’s Dry Eye Expert Today!

Dr. Pradhan is an expert in treating and diagnosing dry eye diseases and many other conditions relating to the eye. If you have trouble with your vision or you are experiencing eye irritation, contact Eye Doctor MD for a dry eye eye evaluation at our Richmond office. We hope to see you soon!