Saturday, January 25, 2014

Dry eye disease, omega 3 and anti-oxidants

omega 3 fatty acids and antioxidants for dry eye disease
A new study  published in the journal Clinical Ophthalmology concluded that dietary supplementation with a combination of omega-3 essential fatty acids and antioxidants was an effective treatment for dry eye disease related symptoms.

The patients in the study took a neutriceutical formulation supplement 3 times a day for 12 weeks.  The researchers measured their dry eye symptoms (scratchy and stinging sensation in the eyes, eye redness, grittiness, painful eyes, tired eyes, grating sensation, and blurry vision) before and after the 12 weeks of supplementation.  

Here are the results:

There was a decrease in the percentage of patients in which dry eye symptoms predominated nearly all the time (53.5% versus 34.1%). A total of 68.1% of patients reported better tolerance to contact lenses after treatment. 

Dietary supplementation was safe for the vast majority of patients in this study.  70% of them did not report any adverse events when they took the supplements.  

The most common adverse event was not very serious and is familiar to anyone taking omega-3 supplements - a "fish-tasting regurgitation" was experienced by 13.5% of patients.  Other adverse events include the following: nausea in 4.9%, diarrhea in 1.3%, and vomiting in 0.3%.

Supplementation appears to be an effective treatment for dry eye sufferers and appears to improve contact lens comfort in addition to reducing dry eye symptoms.

One of the problems with supplementation is that it is difficult to know if your supplements are being absorbed by your body.  Not all nutritional supplements are the same and some are better and more effective than others.  That is why we offer this anti-oxidant scanning and measurement service to patients:


Clinical Ophthalmology (Auckland, N.Z.)
Effectiveness and Tolerability of Dietary Supplementation With a Combination of Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids and Antioxidants in the Treatment of Dry Eye Symptoms: Results of a Prospective Study Clin Ophthalmol 2014 Jan 07;2014(8)169-176, A Olenik