Lipiflow is one of the newest treatment options for the leading cause of dry eye disease. This in-office procedure is effective, safe, and painless. By addressing the root cause of dry eye disease, Lipiflow improves symptoms and provides long term relief of ocular irritation. Wilmington Family Eye Care is proud to offer this top-of-the-line treatment to our patients.
Back to the Basics: What is MGD?
To fully understand how Lipiflow works, you have to first understand what is really causing your . Sometimes, symptoms of dry eye disease are caused by aqueous deficiency, or lack of tear production. But in most dry eye cases, the problem is not the amount of tears being produced, it’s the quality of tears. An underlying condition known as Meibomian gland dysfunction, or MGD, is the most common cause of dry eye symptoms. Millions of tiny Meibomian glands line our eyelids and help produce an oily substance, called meibum, that keeps our tears stable and allows the front of our eyes to feel nourished and protected. In MGD, these glands are clogged or blocked, meibum is not being properly released, and the tear film is unstable. This causes symptoms of dryness, grittiness, and irritation.
Treating MGD with Lipiflow
Meibomian gland dysfunction is difficult to effectively treat at home. Artificial tears and warm compresses can provide temporary relief, but many patients find these treatment methods tedious and difficult to consistently use. Lipiflow is an effective treatment for MGD that is done at the doctor’s office, lessening or eliminating the need for at-home treatments such as eye drops or warm compresses. Lipiflow is an FDA approved device that gently applies the proper amount of warmth and pressure to the Meibomian glands, releasing clogged meibum and returning Meibomian glands to their normal functioning state. Following Lipiflow treatment, normal oil production resumes and the tear film is stable, eliminating uncomfortable symptoms of dry eye disease and Meibomian gland dysfunction.
How Does Lipiflow Work?
The Lipiflow treatment is only performed in-office by a highly qualified professional. Before treatment, a numbing drop is applied to prevent any discomfort. Then, a single-use sterile device is applied around the eyelids, with a vaulted dome to protect the cornea. Regulated pulses of heat and pressure are gently applied to the eyelids, releasing meibum and restoring the health of Meibomian glands. The procedure is often described as an “eyelid massage,” and the device is designed to minimize discomfort. Following a short treatment time, symptoms of dryness should be immediately and drastically improved.
Why Should I Try Lipiflow?
Lipiflow provides consistently positive results in the treatment of dry eye. The procedure is comfortable and efficient, and results can be expected to last a year or longer. Lipiflow is typically not covered by insurance, but many people agree the therapeutic results of the device are worth out-of-pocket costs. The procedure can also eliminate the need for expensive eye drops or other treatment costs.