Intraocular Scattering, Blinking Rate, and Tear Film Osmolarity After Exposure to Environmental Stress
journal contributionposted on 2023-07-26, 15:30 authored by Juan Tabernero, Nery García-Porta, Pablo Artal, Shahina Pardhan
Purpose: Dry environments, such as those in offices or aircraft cabins, can potentially generate ocular discomfort and alter the tear film. We compare light scatter, blinking rate, and tear osmolarity in young and older subjects after exposure to low humidity using a controlled environmental chamber. Methods: Two groups of healthy subjects were recruited; younger (N = 13, 27 ± 6 years) and older (N = 23, 71 ± 7 years). Measurements were carried out before and after 90-minute exposure to low relative humidity (5%) and constant temperature (23 degrees). Ocular light scatter was measured using a double-pass instrument (OQAS, Visiometrics, Spain). Blinking rate was monitored using an infrared video camera. Tear osmolarity was measured using the TearLab system (Escondido, CA, USA). Results: Ocular light scatter increased by a factor of 10% after exposure to low humidity in the older group (P = 0.03) but did not change significantly in the younger group. Blinking rate increased significantly (40% more blinks) in both groups but there was no difference between the groups. No significant differences in osmolarity were shown between two age groups or as result of environmental stress. Conclusions: Exposure to dry environment increased light scatter in older subjects. Although more blinks were triggered in both younger and older groups to prevent corneal dehydration, there was no difference between the groups. Blink rate and osmolarity are not associated with the difference in light scatter. Translational Relevance: Our work approaches a clinical care problem using basic research methods (measuring ocular scatter and blink ratio).
Publication titleTranslational Vision Science and Technology
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