Ocular Surface Disease


Winter is coming! If you have been experiencing an increase in watery, irritated eyes, you may be suffering from a condition known as ocular surface disease. This is Dr. Munson's favorite time of the year to prepare her patients and keep them as comfy as possible for the winter months in Colorado ahead.

Symptoms of ocular surface disease include the feeling of soreness, grittiness, redness, and irritation. In certain cases, the damage can actually affect your vision and create injury to the front surface of your eyes as your lids can rub on your cornea and compromise your vision.

Ocular surface disease typically affects women and becomes more pronounced and bothersome as we age. There are actually several types of ocular surface disease. These include dry eye, Meibomian gland dysfunction, Sjogren's syndrome, blepharitis, and several others. Certain medications can worsen the condition. Medical issues including diabetes, arthritis, and thyroid conditions can also make it worse. Long-term wear of contact lenses and exposure to altitude, wind, and smoke can also be a factor in experiencing symptoms.

Your tears are made up of three components: water, oil, and mucus. The balance between these components needs to be just right in order for the eye to function properly. When the balance is out of whack, you experience ocular surface disease.

There are several treatment options to relieve your symptoms. Dr. Munson can recommend the best option for you based on your specific condition and your lifestyle. Some forms can be treated with specially formulated eye drops or topical medications. Sometimes warm compresses are a good option as they soothe the eyes and encourage tear production. 

At Fort Collins Family Eye Care and the EyeSpa, we go even further by offering additional treatments for ocular surface disease. These procedures are state of the art. Our Pellevé technology allows us to stimulate the oil producing glands allowing the tears to be of better quality, offering improved comfort, clarity, and health for your eyes. Pellevé treatments feel similar to a warm stone massage, providing relief and release of the natural oils around the eyes. Some patients experience immediate relief, and the results will last longer because you are treating the source of the issue.

The best treatment of course for ocular surface disease is the one that works best for you. Schedule a dry eye evaluation with Dr. Munson and ask about customized options for you!