June 2013
Volume 54, Issue 15
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   June 2013
Prevalence of incomplete blinking in dry eye patients evaluated with tear film interferometry
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Joanne Shen
    Mayo Clinic in Arizona, Scottsdale, AZ
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships Joanne Shen, None
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Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science June 2013, Vol.54, 6020. doi:
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      Joanne Shen; Prevalence of incomplete blinking in dry eye patients evaluated with tear film interferometry. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2013;54(15):6020.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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To describe the prevalence of incomplete blinking in dry eye patients evaluated with Lipiview® tear film interferometry.


72 dry eye patients' medical records and Lipiview® data were retrospectively examined between March and November 2012 at Mayo Clinic in Arizona. Demographics were recorded. Video analysis and data output from Lipiview® testing were evaluated.


The average patient's age was 67 years, with median age of 70 years. The group included 61 women (84%) and 11 men. Lipid tear film thickness was measured in Interferometric Color Units (ICU). Normal ICU is greater than 40. The average ICU was 63, with median of 56. Video analysis of the 143 eyes which had complete testing revealed that 82% of the eyes (118/143) were observed to have incomplete or partial blinking. Of the 118 incomplete blinking eyes, 16% (19/118) had abnormal ICU. Of the 25 complete blinking eyes, 32% (8/25) had abnormal ICU. Analysis of variance did not reveal statistical significance between these two groups of patients (p=0.36).


Incomplete blinking is frequently found in patients with dry eye syndrome undergoing Lipiview® interferometric lipid tear film analysis. Incomplete blinking may be a significant contributor to dry eye syndrome and is caused by neurogenic, post/surgical, mechanical, contact lens wear, or prolonged computer use. However, in this study incomplete blinking did not correlate with decreased lipid tear film thickness. This study is limited by its small population and retrospective nature. Further prospective controlled studies are needed to validate the findings. In summary, Lipiview® testing can increase recognition of incomplete blinking which can guide treatment of dry eye syndrome.

Keywords: 486 cornea: tears/tear film/dry eye • 479 cornea: clinical science  

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