Our tears are normally protected by a healthy oil coating, which is produced by eyelid oil glands (Meibomian glands). These glands can become blocked by unhealthy, thickened oils. This condition is called Meibomian Gland Dysfunction, or “MGD.” MGD may be present in over 85% of dry eye patients.
MGD leads to oil-deficient “watery” tears that evaporate too quickly, causing dry eye syndrome. If MGD is left untreated, it tends to get worse over time. Blocked glands can become damaged severely enough that they permanently fail to function.
Aqueous Tear Deficiency, which is a less-common dry eye condition affecting the watery portion of the tears, can accompany MGD, or can occur independently of it.
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