To investigate the effect of the meibomian gland squeezer for treatment of meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD).
Seventy patients (140 eyes) with MGD were randomly divided into 2 groups: 36 patients who were treated by the meibomian gland squeezer as the treatment group and 34 patients were selected as the control group. Patients were evaluated at baseline, and 2-week and 1-month visits for subjective symptoms, objective signs and pain assessments, including ocular symptom scores, Ocular Surface Disease Index, tear breakup time, corneal fluorescein staining, Schirmer scores with no anesthetic (Schirmer I test), meibum quality, meibum expressibility, and Numeric Rating Scale-11.
Sixty-five patients were followed in the study, and mean (±SD) age was 57.0 (±12.6) years. Compared with baseline, the 2 groups had varying degrees of improvement in ocular symptom scores and Ocular Surface Disease Index at the 2-week and 1-month visits; there was a statistically significant difference between groups (P < 0.001). At the 1-month visit, the treatment group showed a greater improvement in the breakup time (3.8 ± 1.6 vs. 1.8 ± 1.0 seconds, P < 0.001), corneal fluorescein staining (−2.1 ± 2.13 vs. −0.9 ± 1.3, P = 0.03), Schirmer I test (5.3 ± 2.9 vs. 2.3 ± 2.8 mm, P < 0.001), meibum quality (−7.5 ± 2.9 vs. −5.3 ± 2.4, P = 0.004), and meibum expressibility (−1.2 ± 0.8 vs. −0.7 ± 0.4, P = 0.007). In the treatment group, the mean (±SD) of total pain scores was 2.4 ± 1.0, which indicated that mild pain was still predominant under topical anesthesia.
The meibomian gland squeezer may be safe, effective, and helpful for treatment of MGD and may offer an attractive treatment option for some patients with MGD, although it can cause mild pain or discomfort.