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Rohit Shetty, Swaminathan Sethu, Priyanka Chevour, Kalyani Deshpande, Natasha Pahuja, Harsha Nagaraja, Narendra Pindipapanahalli, Arkasubhra Ghosh; Lower Vitamin D Level and Distinct Tear Cytokine Profile Were Observed in Patients with Mild Dry Eye Signs but Exaggerated Symptoms. Trans. Vis. Sci. Tech. 2016;5(6):16. doi: 10.1167/tvst.5.6.16.
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Dry eye is associated with inflammation, pain, and discomfort. Vitamin D is known to modulate immune responses and pain. This study investigates the level of serum vitamin D and tear-inflammatory proteins with relation to exaggerated symptoms in patients with mild dry eye.
Patients with mild dry eye signs (Dry Eye Workshop [DEWS] severity grade 1) but with exaggerated symptoms and healthy controls (n = 19, each) were recruited for this cross-sectional study. Schirmer's Test I (mm), tear film break-up time (TBUT; secs), and ocular surface disease index (OSDI) score were recorded. Serum vitamin D level and tear cytokine levels were measured.
The mean OSDI score in the patient cohort (46 ± 3) was significantly higher than controls (8.4 ± 1.6). TBUT was lower (7.6 ± 0.3 secs) in patients compared with controls (11.0 ± 0.9 secs). Mean Schirmer's Test I value in patients (19.3 ± 1.4 mm) was lower than in controls (30.6 ± 1.9 mm). An inverse correlation was observed between serum vitamin D levels and OSDI score (r = −0.569; P = 0.01). Significantly higher levels of interleukin (IL)-17A/F, interferon (IFN)-γ, monocyte chemotactic protein (MCP)-1, intercellular adhesion molecule (ICAM)-1, IL-4, IL-10, and decreased IL-2 concentrations was observed in the tears of patients compared with controls (P < 0.05).
Decreased serum vitamin D was associated with exaggerated symptoms in dry eye patients with mild dry eye signs. In addition, altered tear cytokine profile was also observed in these patients.
Vitamin D measurements would aid in the diagnosis and management of dry eye.
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