Having suffered from the irritating symptoms of dry eye, our very own ophthalmologist Dr. Michael Manning decided to undergo the LipiFlow® treatment. The revolutionary procedure sends pulses of energy to the meibomian glands that can become blocked over time, helping restore their function. As a result, people suffering from dry eye can experience relief from the bothersome condition. Being a major advocate for LipiFlow®, our ophthalmologist recently sat down in a question and answer session to recount his experience.
Q: How long have you had dry eye?
Dr. Manning: I have noticed symptoms of dry eye since about the time that I was in medical school. Using my eyes quite a bit for reading as well as computer work, I would notice them feeling tired with a mild burning feeling by the end of the day.
Q: What type of medications did you use previously to treat your dry eye condition?
Dr. Manning: I had primarily used artificial tears but was never very good about being consistent with putting the eye drops in at regular intervals or remembering to take the bottle with me.
Q: How did you decide to undergo the LipiFlow® treatment?
Dr. Manning: When I first began reading about the LipiFlow® treatment, I was excited because this finally appeared to be a solution that addressed the underlying cause of dry eye for my patients as well as for me. I read quite a bit about it and did research on its effectiveness and safety. I even met with the inventor of the device and traveled to the headquarters of the company in North Carolina to learn as much as I could about it. After evaluating it for some time, I decided to undergo the treatment myself.
Q: How would you describe what the LipiFlow® treatment felt like?
Dr. Manning: I was very pleasantly surprised to find that the treatment was very comfortable. What I felt during the treatment was a soothing warmth on my eyelids along with an interesting sensation of the pulsations. By the end of the treatment, my eyes felt very refreshed.
Q: Did you need to do anything for recovery following your LipiFlow® session?
Dr. Manning: Fortunately, I did not have to do anything for my recovery, and I was able to go right back to work seeing patients without any down time.
Q: What changes/improvements have you noticed since your treatment?
Dr. Manning: I have been very pleased with my results and find that my dry eye symptoms have been dramatically improved. The main times that I may still use an occasional eye drop is when I take a long plane flight as I find that airplane cabins have very low humidity and the air vents often blow on my eyes throughout a flight, still making them get dry.
Q: When will you return for the next treatment?
Dr. Manning: My view of this treatment is much like how I would view the importance of regular dental cleanings and exams. I believe that having the LipiFlow® treatment performed periodically will be very helpful at maintaining the health of my meibomian glands throughout my lifetime. While I have not needed another treatment since this was performed in February 2012, I have recently been considering having this treatment performed approximately every 2 years or so just to keep my oil-producing glands functioning well. Of course, if symptoms recur sooner, then I will have the treatment performed by my colleague Dr. Liffland.
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If you suffer from the common condition known as dry eye syndrome, we encourage you to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced eye doctors to learn how LipiFlow® can help relieve your symptoms.