To evaluate the morphology and function of rete ridges in eyelid margin and inflammatory cytokines in meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD) associated with dry eye symptom.
A total of 63 subjects with OSDI score≥13 were enrolled in MGD group and no-MGD group. Main measurements included tear cytokines levels and the rete ridges morphology.
meibomian gland loss (MGL), corneal staining score (CSS), and IL-6 and TNF-α increased, meibomian gland secretion (MGS) decreased, the density of the rete ridges was lower, the longest diameters and shortest diameters of the rete ridges were longer in MGD group. The MGD group showed a negative correlation between MGL and BUT and MGS, but it showed a positive correlation with CSS. CSS was negatively correlated with IL-6. LLT was negatively correlated with IL-2 and IL-4. The shortest diameters of rete ridges in eyelid margin had a significant positive correlation with IL-2, IL-4, IL-10, and IFN-γ levels.
change of meibomian gland function and the rete ridges morphology might have some correlation with the injury to ocular surface. Some inflammatory cytokines were correlated with the change of the rete ridges morphology, which might in turn affect the ocular surface function.