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MGD And Diabetes: What You Need To Know

MGD and Diabetes: What You Need To Know

Meibomian Gland Dysfunction, or MGD, is considered the leading cause of dry eye disease. Meibomian glands, named after the German doctor who studied them, make an oil called meibum. Meibum, water, and mucus form the three layers of tear film, the fluid that keeps your eyes moist. The oil helps prevent the water layer on the eye surface from drying out.

Changes to the amount or quality of the oil, or to the glands themselves, can lead to MGD. As WebMD explains, It’s often the result of a combination of things. The most common type, obstructive MGD, happens when the gland openings get clogged, and less and less oil reaches the eye surface.

What are the symptoms of MGD?
The symptoms of meibomian gland dysfunctioncan be:

  • red eyes
  • a gritty feeling
  • itchyeyes
  • blurred vision
  • inner rim of your eyelid looking uneven or rough

Symptoms can get worse when you’re on the computer for a long time or if the air in your home or office is very dry, either from air conditioning or heating.

So, What is The Link Between MGD and Diabetes?

The link between MGD and Diabetes?
Researchers based in Colombia and Spain recently presented their findings at the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology meeting. In their study, they looked at the cases of 73 participants, including 37 with type 2 diabetes, with the remainder in a control group.

The findings revealed that:

  • 71% of all study participants had MGD
  • 76% of the participants with diabetes had MGD
  • 67% of the control group had MGD
  • Symptoms of MGD were more severe in participants with diabetes

What is the treatment for MGD?

When present, MGD must be treated to prevent permanent damage to the eye. Depending on the severity of the MGD, your doctor may treat you with a combination of heat and massage to the affected area. Topical lubricants can relieve symptoms, reduce tear film evaporation and stabilize lipids in tear film. Warm compress or heat applications, such as hot wet towel or with heat masks, or with devices, can alleviate the problem.

What can you do?
If you have diabetes, you will need to visit your Ophthalmologist for an annual eye exam to ensure you are proactively managing any eye issues before they become larger problems.  If you have any symptoms of eye irritation, see your doctor immediately.

See what you’ve been missing! Trust ZIEKEREYE Ophthalmology for all your eye care needs. Call us at 518.450.1080 or use our convenient online Request an Appointment form to schedule your consultation.

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