Prevalence of Meibomian Gland Dysfunction Based on Meibomian Gland Expression

Dave Kading


Purpose: Dry eye is the most common eye disease encountered by eye care providers. According to Lemp’s 2012 study, 86% of dry eye has meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD) as an underlying cause.. Our study seeks to determine if the prevalence of meibomian gland dysfunction within a dry eye population correlates with evaluating meibomian gland expression.

Methods: In a retrospective analysis, we analyzed meibomian gland expression data gathered during dry eye evaluations for 100 subjects. Diagnostic meibomian gland expression was performed and analyzed using the technique described by Korb and Blackie (2008) using a standardized device, the TearScience Meibomian Gland Evaluator. Korb et al (2014) defined meibomian gland dysfunction as 6 or fewer functioning lower lid meibomian glands.

Results: The average age of the 100 subjects was 52 years old with approximately a 1:1 male-to-female ratio. Average meibomian glands yielding liquid secretion (MGYLS) was 5 OD, 4 OS. Using Korb’s MGD diagnosis criteria, study results confirm ~90% of dry eye patients have meibomian gland dysfunction, supporting Lemp’s 2012 study.

Conclusion: Meibomian gland dysfunction is the leading cause of dry eye, measuring at 90% in this study’s dry eye population. Furthermore, Hom et al. (1990) reported that 39% of asymptomatic patients had MGD, supporting the need to incorporate evaluation of the meibomian glands during regular eye examinations to detect and treat dry eye disease earlier. Use of a standardized meibomian gland expression device builds objective evidence to the examination to not only aid diagnosis of MGD but also track treatment as outcomes improve the number of MGYLS.


Year: 2016

Program Number: 165081

Resource Type: Lectures & Workshops

Author Affiliation: n/a

Co-Authors: Charissa Young, Emily Bucher

Co-Author Affiliation: Specialty Eyecare Group, Walla Walla, WA VA Hospital

Room: Ballroom A-B