Articoli Scientifici di Oftalmologia

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Ocular Surface Epithelial Thickness Evaluation in Dry Eye Patients: Clinical Correlations

Purpose. To evaluate the relationship between corneal and conjunctival epithelium thickness and ocular surface clinical tests in dryeyedisease(DED)patients.PatientsandMethods. Fifty-fourpatientswithDEDand32controlsubjectswereincluded.Each patient underwent an ocular surface evaluation using the ocular surface disease index (OSDI), tear film break-up time (TBUT), corneal and conjunctival staining, tear film lipid layer analysis, and Schirmer test. The central corneal (CET), limbal (LET), and bulbar conjunctival epithelium thickness (BET) were acquired using spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT).

 Results.Comparedtocontrolsubjects,meanBETwassignificantlythickerandmeanLETwassignificantlylowerintheDEDgroup. There was no significant difference in mean CET between the two groups. The mean LET was correlated with OSDI and TBUT.
 TheinferiorLETwascorrelatedwithOSDI,SchirmerItest,TBUT,Oxfordscore,andcornealsensitivity.MeanBETwascorrelated withOSDIandTBUT,butnotwithSchirmerItestandOxfordscore.Conclusions.Indryeyepatients,athinnerlimbalepithelium andathickerbulbarconjunctivalepitheliumwereobserved.Thesechangeswerecorrelatedtotheseverityofdryeyesymptomsand tearfilmalterations.
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