May 2004
Volume 45, Issue 13
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   May 2004
Ocular Surface Analysis and Treatment in Computer Vision Syndrome
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • C.G. Blehm
    Dept of Ophthalmology, University Texas–Houston, Houston, TX
  • S. Vishnu
    Dept of Ophthalmology, University Texas–Houston, Houston, TX
  • K. Dawson
    Dept of Ophthalmology, University Texas–Houston, Houston, TX
  • A. Chuang
    Dept of Ophthalmology, University Texas–Houston, Houston, TX
  • R. Yee
    Dept of Ophthalmology, University Texas–Houston, Houston, TX
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships  C.G. Blehm, None; S. Vishnu, None; K. Dawson, None; A. Chuang, None; R. Yee, None.
  • Footnotes
    Support  none
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science May 2004, Vol.45, 3912. doi:
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      C.G. Blehm, S. Vishnu, K. Dawson, A. Chuang, R. Yee; Ocular Surface Analysis and Treatment in Computer Vision Syndrome . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2004;45(13):3912.

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

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Abstract: : Purpose: Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) is a term used to describe computer users’ common complaints of eyestrain, tired eyes, irritation, burning sensation, dry eyes, headaches, and blurred vision. It is estimated that over 50% of all computer users suffer from at least one of these symptoms now believed to be due to ocular surface abnormalities, accommodative spasm, or ergonomic misalignment. This study demonstrates the ocular surface abnormalities asssociated with CVS and how modifying the periocular environment improves symptoms and signs of CVS. Methods: Seventeen symptomatic computer users (14 women, 3 men) with a mean age of 43.8 years +/– 9.4 and seven age–matched control patients were given a questionnaire to assess type and severity of ocular symptoms. A complete eye exam including fluorescein and lissamine green, tearscope, and Schirmers testing was performed. Filtered goggles, were tested on the symptomatic patients in a controlled work environment to assess both subjective relief during computer use and any objective improvements on slit lamp examination. Results: Fifteen of the seventeen (88.2%) symptomatic patients examined demonstrated at least 2+ meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD) of both eyes compared to 28.5% of control patients. Ten of the seventeen (58.8%) symptomatic patients showed a 3+ MGD compared to 0% of control patients. Fluorescein and lissamine green staining patterns were significantly better in the control patients versus the symptomatic patients. In the symptomatic patients, filtered goggles significantly improved subjective comfort level when compared to patients not wearing the goggles. There were no significant exam changes following the use of the goggles, although tearscope evaluation showed a trend toward a more stable tear film. Conclusions: In this pilot study, we conclude that MGD is likely a predisposing factor inducing ocular symptoms during extended computer use. This factor causes an evaporation of the tear film, thus exacerbating the dry eye problems typically seen with decreased blink rates during computer use. Filtered goggles may be beneficial in relieving ocular symptoms during computer use.

Keywords: cornea: tears/tear film/dry eye • clinical (human) or epidemiologic studies: prevalence/incidence • clinical (human) or epidemiologic studies: treatment/prevention assessment/controlled clinical trials 

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