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Jelle Vehof, Nicole Sillevis Smitt - Kamminga, Christopher J Hammond; Clinical characteristics of dry eye patients with depression. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2016;57(12):2841.
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Population-based studies have shown depression is highly associated with dry eye disease (DED), however the clinical characteristics of DED patients with depression are not known. We performed a large cross-sectional, observational clinical study to investigate whether DED patients with depression differ from DED patients without depression.
A total of 662 DED patients from the tertiary dry eye clinic based Groningen Longitudinal Sicca Study (GLOSSY) cohort were included. All patients were investigated for presence of a past diagnosis or treatment of depression by a questionnaire. They subsequently completed the Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI) symptom questionnaire, and were tested for tear osmolarity, Schirmer's test, tear film break-up time, corneal and conjunctival staining, amount of mucus, the presence of blepharitis, and visual acuity. All outcomes were compared between DED patients with depression versus those without, using a Mann-Whitney U test.
A total of 74 DED patients (11.2%) were ever diagnosed with and/or treated for depression. Age and gender did not significantly differ between DED patients with and without depression. The OSDI symptom score was significantly higher in the depression group compared to the group without depression (45.3 vs 35.2, p=0.001). Moreover, DED patients with depression scored higher on every single item of the 12 item OSDI symptom score, with 8 of them being statistically significant. In particular, light sensitivity and eye problems when working with a computer were worse in this group (both p<0.001). However, none of the dry eye tests showed any significant difference between the two groups (all p>0.05), indicating DED signs are similar in DED patients with and without depression.
In DED patients, the presence of depression is common and associated with increased severity of all dry eye symptoms across the OSDI, while objective ocular surface findings are not different from other DED patients. For clinicians, more awareness of depression might be valuable in understanding the poor correlation between signs and symptoms in DED.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2016 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Seattle, Wash., May 1-5, 2016.
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