Intense pulse light therapy treatment for refractory dry eye disease due to meibomian gland dysfunction

Serap Yurttaser Ocak, Sezen Karakus, Osman Bulut Ocak, Akın Cakir, Selim Bolukbasi, Burak Erden, Emine Bas, Mustafa Elcioglu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Purpose: To assess the effect of the intense pulse light (IPL) therapy for the treatment of meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD) and dry eye parameters. Methods: Patients who underwent an IPL therapy for the treatment of MGD were included in this retrospective study. Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI) scores, the frequency of daily lubricant use, non-invasive tear break-up time (NIBUT), meibomian glad dropout scores, corneal staining scores, and Schirmer test results were collected from patient charts that recorded at baseline and follow-up visits at 1 month, 3 months, and 12 months. For the analysis, patients were grouped based on the severity of their baseline meibomian gland dropout score as mild, moderate, and severe atrophy. Results: Forty-three patients (mild atrophy = 22, moderate atrophy = 17, and severe atrophy = 4) were included for analysis. Except for the Schirmer test, all dry eye parameters significantly improved in patients with mild and moderate atrophy following the treatment and this effect lasted until the 12-month follow-up visit (p < 0.001). No significant improvement in any parameter was observed in patients with severe atrophy at any time point (p > 0.05). In the mild and moderate atrophy groups, OSDI scores, as well as NIBUT, started improving at 1 month (p < 0.01), while corneal staining and meibomian gland dropout scores showed earliest improvements at 3 months (p < 0.01). No adverse events were observed, except for temporary redness in 4 patients. Conclusion: The IPL treatment seems an effective and safe treatment for patients with MGD. This study shows that the IPL resulting in an earlier improvement in symptoms and signs with long-lasting beneficial effect on the meibomian glands.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1135-1141
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Ophthalmology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2020


  • Dry eye
  • Intense pulse light
  • Meibomian gland
  • Meibomian gland dysfunction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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