Meibomian Gland Dysfunction


If you are experiencing dryness, itchiness, or burning in your eyes, you could be suffering from Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (MGD). Since MGD symptoms overlap with other eye conditions, it's pivotal you visit us at Saratoga Vision, if you live in or around Saratoga Springs, for a proper diagnosis.

Symptoms of Meibomian Gland Dysfunction

Because MGD occurs when the oil glands are blocked, you are likely to experience the below symptoms:

  • Eye dryness, itching, and irritation
  • Redness
  • Watery eyes
  • Intermittent blurry vision
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Feeling like an object is in your eyes
  • Crusty discharge

MGD typically doesn't exhibit early symptoms. However, if the condition goes untreated, it can lead to dry eye syndrome and permanent damage. MGD commonly occurs with eye blepharitis that leads to inflamed eyelids and crusty discharge at the eyelashes.  

Risk Factors for MGD

Although MGD can affect everyone, some factors increase the chances of its occurrence. These include:

  • Age. The older you are, the higher the risk of MGD. The risk of MGD is highest in persons aged 40 and above. 
  • Wearing makeup. Makeup and other eyeliners can clog the Meibomian glands, especially if you don't clean all the traces of makeup before you sleep.

Research has shown that wearing contact lenses increases the chances of MGD, and these changes linger for up to six months after the withdrawal of contact lenses.

Treatment of MGD

The symptoms of MGD mimic the signs of dry eye syndrome, and only an eye doctor can give you a proper diagnosis. Applying pressure on the eyelid to evaluate the amount of secretions can help tell if you have MGD. Besides, your optometrist may test your tears' quality, quantity, and stability to diagnose MGD.

After a proper diagnosis, your doctor may apply warm compresses on the eyelid coupled with gentle massages. This can sometimes unclog blocked oil glands. Other treatments include:

  • ILUX. This method uses a special device that heats up and massages blocked Meibomian glands. 
  • Eye drops. Eye drops reduce inflammation and boost the flow of tears. 
  • TearCare: During this method, your eye doctor uses a hand-held device to apply heating patches on the eyelids. The objective is to melt waxy buildup to unblock the oil glands.

If you are in Saratoga Springs and its environs and suspect you have Meibomian gland dysfunction, schedule an appointment with us at Saratoga Vision. Our optometrist will provide effective treatment to get you feeling like yourself again!

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