IPL for Dry Eye is a new technology that helps people with Dry Eye Disease. If you work at a computer all day, it’s likely that your eyes are tired at the end of the day. Perhaps your eyelids feel heavy. Maybe your vision gets blurrier close to bedtime. Maybe your eyes look red, or simply feel dry. And the main cause of all of that is easily described as “dry eye” or “Office eye”.
You are not alone. Dry eye is increasingly common and affects 10 to 15% of the Swiss population today. And it all comes down to a lack of lubrication from your tears. But the term “dry eye” doesn’t actually get to the root of the problem. Most of the time, when people complain about “dry eye”, it is actually “Meibomian gland dysfunction” or simply, MGD. Another term often used is “Blepharitis”. And treating it isn’t always as simple as lubricating your eyes with eyedrops.
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) therapy has been used in dermatology for decades now, but more recently, IPL has been shown to be an effective treatment for chronic dry eyes caused by MGD.
ELZA’s IPL for Dry Eye device is the Eye-Light. It works by focusing pulses of polychromatic light with wavelengths (500-1200 nm) into the meibomian glands. The light is absorbed by oxyhemoglobin present in the blood vessels which raises the temperature of the affected cells being illuminated, which melts the solidified oil blockages that prevent the production of healthy, refreshing tears.
Most patients find that this approach brings many benefits, as it reduces the need for lubricating eye drops, makes your eyes feel more comfortable, and as a consequence, your quality of vision will improve, too. In short, IPL should bring relief from dry eyes. Scientific publications have shown that 4 IPL treatments are needed initially, then switch over to a maintenance treatment every 3 to 6 months, depending on if and how quickly MGD might return.
The IPL treatment is usually combined with LLLT, which stands for Low Level Laser Therapy. This treatment modality has been in clinical use in dentistry and dermatology for years. For treatment of the eyelids, laser light is emitted in the infrared range of the spectrum. This light gently warms the Meibomian glands in the depth of the eyelids, so that the sebum can evacuate from the clogged glands.
Besides for Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (Blepharitis), IPL and LLLT are effective in:
Styes are an acute infection of one or several Meibomian glands. They usually take days to weeks to dissolve and are quite bothersome to the patients. IPL/LLLT therapy accelerates the healing. Number of therapy sessions needed: 1 to 2.
Demodex are mites – little animals that live in the hair follicles of the eyelashes. This leads to constant inflammation and itchiness of the lids. Demodex mites are very resistant and hard to eliminate. IPL/LLLT is an efficient means to treat demodex infections. Number of therapy sessions needed: 1 to 2.
Whether it is therapeutic or cosmetic lid surgery, IPL/LLLT treatment promotes rapid and gentle wound healing. Number of therapy sessions needed: 1.