To analyze whether inter-eye osmo larity differences were related to dry eye symptomatology.
A total of 135 participants were randomly recruited from those who visited in the Optometry Clinic of the Optometry Faculty (Universidade de Santiago de Compostela). In a single scheduled session after the recruitment, Ocular Surface Disease Index was filled out following the standard instructions and TearLab measurements were made in both the participants’ eyes (10-15 min lapse). Osmolarity values were compared between the right and left eyes and the absolute inter-ocular difference (|OD-OS|) correlated with the Ocular Surface Disease Index score for the whole sample. Based on the Ocular Surface Disease Index score, the sample was divided into four symptomatic subgroups, and differences in the |OD-OS| values were calculated.
The whole sample showed a statistically significant inter-eye osmolarity difference (p=0.025; |OD-OS| = 9.2 ± 9.3 mOsm/l) and the correlation between Ocular Surface Disease Index and |OD-OS| (r=0.369; p<0.001). A statistically significant difference was found in the |OD-OS| value between symptomatic subgroups (Kruskal-Wallis, p=0.003). Mann-Whitney U test showed a significant difference between asymptomatic vs. moderate (p=0.006) vs. severe symp tomatic patients (p=0.001) and between mild vs. severe symptomatic patients (p=0.045), whereas no difference on |OD-OS| was found between participants with contiguous symptomatic subgroups (all p³0.174).
Tear film inter-eye osmolarity differences are significantly higher in severe dry eye disease symptoms.