In the United States, over 82 million people are affected by blepharitis. Blepharitis is a chronic, inflammatory disease of the eyelids caused by overgrowth of normal bacteria living along the lid and the base of the eyelashes.
Blepharitis affects all ages, but the prevalence increases with age. This overgrowth of bacteria causes crusting along the eyelid, and creates a sticky biofilm that harbors bacterial exotoxins.
Since the eyelid margins are difficult to clean, this overgrowth of bacteria, scurf, and biofilm can build up over many years. Over time, the inflammation affects all of the structures in the eyelid including the meibomian glands. It is known that meibomian gland dysfunction caused by blepharitis is the most common cause of evaporative dry eye disease.
Symptoms of Blepharitis
- Itching or scratch eyes
- Foreign body sensation
- Dry eyes
- Eye rubbing
Stages of Blepharitis
Stage 1: early biofilm formation with swelling of the lash follicles, causing lash misdirection
Stage 2: inflammation of meibomian glands with plugging
Stage 3: lacrimal involvement leads to aqueous insufficiency with little to no tear lake
Stage 4: chronic inflammation leads to a breakdown in the structural integrity of the eyelid leading to the lid laxity, entropion, and ectropion.
The traditional treatment for blepharitis is to scrub the eyelid margins with baby shampoo on a cotton swab or to use systane/ocusoft lid wipes. This can be a difficult procedure to perform at home and has limited effectiveness.
But now with BlephEx, your doctor can directly clean and exfoliate your eyelids and lashes, and remove the biofilm, which will improve your symptoms and help control the long-term damage to your tear glands.
BlephEx is an in-office procedure that thoroughly and precisely eliminates the scurf, bacterial debris, and biofilm that builds up along the lid margin that causes inflammatory lid disease.
BlephEx will improve your chronic symptoms and overall health of the eyelids. The procedure takes about 10-12 minutes. Depending on the severity of the disease, treatments are repeated either once or twice a year.
If you think you are a perfect candidate for BlephEx or any of our dry eye treatments, please contact our office for more information.