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If you suffer from dry eyes and haven’t heard of the LipiFlow treatment, you should definitely check out this revolutionary dry-eye procedure. The LipiFlow thermal pulsation system is now helping many of us who have suffered with debilitating eye dryness for years, finally get true relief.
Up until recently, if you had dry eyes, your only resort was eye drops, which would help to make up for what our tear glands were no longer providing us. But if you have the sort of chronic dry eyes that some of us suffer from, the constant application of eye drops is not only an inconvenience, it can become quite expensive.
Now that LipiFlow Thermal Pulsation has come on the scene, for many of us dry eye sufferers eye drops have become a thing of the past. As you can discover from many a recent LipiFlow review, these treatments can make a huge difference for how you live your life.
Whether you have only recently started suffering from what is commonly referred to as “dry eyes,” or whether you are a long time sufferer, you should definitely look into whether LipiFlow can work for you and your eyes.
What exactly are “Dry Eyes”?
Before we get into our overview of the LipiFlow treatment below and discuss everything from the LipiFlow cost to the specifics about the LipiFlow procedure—let’s start by being clear about what we are talking about when we are talking about “dry eyes.”
Typical “dry eye” symptoms range from relatively mild manifestations such as redness, tearing, itching and a feeling of grittiness to more severe effects such as strong sensitivity to light (especially daylight), difficulty seeing, irritation and even a stinging sensation on the eye or eyes. In some cases, a patient may feel there is something stuck in his or her eye, may have strong discharge from one or both eyes, or may even have debilitating irritation that prevents them from going about the day normally.
Before the LipiFlow treatment was available patients simply had to live with their dry eye conditions even though such symptoms inevitably lead to loss of productivity at work or school. Those suffering from dry eyes often can’t wear contact lenses and have increased difficulty reading or staring at screens, thus making most educational and office settings more challenging for them than those with normally functioning eyes.
What are the sources of these problems?
As the medical community began to look more closely at the reasons for these dry eye problems, they discovered that there were actually 2 kinds of “dry eyes” both resulting from gland dysfunctions:
- Aqueous Dry Eyes
- Evaporative Dry Eyes
Aqueous Dry Eyes
Aqueous Dry Eyes occur when a person does not produce enough liquid to keep the eye properly moisturized. It arises because of a deficiency in the lacrimal gland (“the tear gland”). For a long time, eye doctors have focused on this as the central problem with eye dryness. Thus, all the eye drops that get prescribed.
Evaporative Dry Eyes and the LipiFlow Treatment
However, as it turns out, Aqueous Dry Eyes are not the main cause of most eye dryness. In fact, more than two thirds of all eye dryness sufferers suffer from Evaporative Eye Dryness. This second kind of eye gland condition does not occur because of lack of moisture in the lacrimal gland, but because of lipid deficiency that fails to keep the moisture from the lacrimal gland from evaporating off the eye.
Put in another way, the problem with Evaporative Dry Eyes occurs because the eye glands do not produce the oily shield that protects the eye from evaporation. The eye gets enough moisture from the tear gland, but the moisture doesn’t stay on the eye.
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What Does The LipiFlow Dry Eye Treatment Do to Help?
LipiFlow dry eyes therapy goes to the source of Evaporative Dry Eyes, the meibomian glands. It is these glands that produce the oily lipids that, in a healthy eye, keep moisture from being evaporated prematurely.
Over time, however, meibomian glands can wear down with age or due to other stressors, producing less oil and leaving the eye increasingly vulnerable to the elements. With dry winds such as the Santa Ana’s adding extra stressors to our environment, those of us in Southern California are especially vulnerable to dry eye problems. (Though these problems can occur virtually anywhere.)
The LipiFlow treatment helps to increase the amount of productivity of the meibomian glands by unclogging the gland and by gently stimulating it back into activity. (Clinical studies reveal that the LipiFlow dry eye treatment unclogs 7 glands immediately after the procedure and that over the course of a year up to 9 have been restored to healthier productivity.)
The LipiFlow treatment offers 4 of 5 patients a significant decrease in their dry eye symptoms, usually making the constant use of eye drops unnecessary and relieving the majority of patients’ eye dryness symptoms.
What is LipiFlow?
You may not have heard of LipiFlow dry eye treatment before reading about it here. In US markets it is relatively new, receiving Food and Drug Administration clearance as of the summer of 2011. Tear Science, the creator of LipiFlow, was established in 2005 as a result of over a quarter century of research into the causes and treatments of meibomian gland dysfunction (aka, Evaporative Dry Eyes). The cornerstone of their approach to this eye affliction is the LipiFlow Thermal Pulsation System which is now the leading solution to Evaporative Dry Eye problems.
Though still new here, LipiFlow treatment in the USA is rapidly growing in popularity and has been adopted by many established eye care treatment providers—not the least of which are facilities authorized to use Lasik Surgery methods.
This rapid adoption has come from the life-changing effects that LipiFlow users have experienced as a result of their LipiFlow dry eye treatments.
What Former Dry Eye Sufferers are Saying in LipiFlow Reviews
Word is getting out about LipiFlow in US magazines and on web forums. Those who have long suffered from dry eyes and have finally found relief have been spreading the word about the positive effects that LipiFlow has had on their lives.
Consider just some of the great things that the LipiFlow procedure can do for you. Here is a summary of many positive points that LipiFlow reviews mention:
- No longer feel dependent on eye drops for relief.
- Feel more productive at work and at school.
- Be able to watch television and read even after a long day at work or during the dry windy season.
- Be able to go outdoors in the middle of day and enjoy sunny, warm weather.
- No longer feel as if “something is stuck under your eyelid”.
- Be able (in many cases) to choose to wear contact lenses again.
- Be able to see the road clearly without squinting even on the sunniest of days.
- No long have headaches and tiredness from your eye problems.
- Generally just feeling better about your eyes and life.
With 4 of 5 LipiFlow patients reporting significant improvements in their eye health it is no wonder that you are seeing a spike in the positive LipiFlow reviews throughout the blogosphere and on web forums devoted to dry eye sufferers. But you need not take an anonymous review’s word for it. Consult your ophthalmologist or find LipiFlow treatment locations near you to learn more about how this amazing procedure can help your dry eyes.
You and your eyes will not regret it!
How Does the LipiFlow Procedure Work?
Patients are often surprised by how quick and painless the LipiFlow procedure actually is.
The first step in the LipiFlow procedure is to make sure that you actually have Evaporative Dry Eyes rather than Aqueous Dry Eyes. In order to do this your ophthalmologist will use the LipiView Ocular Surface Interferometer to capture high resolution images of your meibomian glands in order to determine whether they are the source of your problems.
If the results from this procedure indicate that the meibomian glands are indeed the source of your dry eye problems, you can then move on to the second step of the LipiFlow procedure.
For the second step of the LipiFlow procedure, your ophthalmologist will begin by applying anesthetic eye drops so as to increase your comfort during the procedure.
A LipiFlow Thermal Pulsation System eye piece will then be gently placed on your eye. Once in place, the LipiFlow thermal pulsation system will be initiated, and will begin evaporating the blockages on your meibomian glands via a gentle pulse and low intensity warming.
The LipiFlow Thermal Pulsation System generally takes about ten minutes to perform its magic. The vast majority of patients report feeling little more than a light pressure during the procedure.
The device is then removed and applied to the second eye, taking a total of 12 minutes for each eye. (Less than a half hour for the entire procedure.)
The procedure is so gentle and non-invasive, in fact, that patients can go right back to their daily routines as soon as it is completed. You will feel even less effect than you would from a regular eye exam where the dilation of the pupil usually incapacitates a patient after their treatment. No such effect happens with a LipiFlow treatment.
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How Effective are LipiFlow Dry Eyes Treatments?
Those who undergo the LipiFlow Dry Eyes treatment report feeling the effects right away. Most patients describe feeling an immense relief from the symptoms of dry eyes just after the treatment is complete. (This is because once the meibomian gland is cleared, the eye goes back fairly quickly to functioning relatively normally—the lipids again offering a protective shield that keeps the lacrimal moisture from evaporating.)
But as the glands adjusts to its renewed vigor, the eye continues to improve for up to a year after the initial LipiFlow dry eyes therapy session without any follow up. Thus in the first year patients feel better and better.
So what does LipiFlow cost?
Typically, the LipiFlow treatment cost per eye is around $700 (total of $1400 for both eyes). Though this cost may seem high, dry eye suffers should factor the following considerations into making their decisions:
First, consider the cost of your current use of eye drops versus the one time LipiFlow treatment cost. Many patients report spending as much as $300/month on eye drops alone, and even then the effect proves not to be a complete solution to your dry eye symptoms. Given that the effects of a LipiFlow treatment will usually continue to improve for at least a year, such a patient as the one above would actually see a significant savings over the course of a year.
Second, even if the amount you spend on eye drops is not quite as high as the patient mentioned above, consider the convenience of not having to constantly pop eye drops into your eyes. Most patients feel relieved to finally be able to leave the home without checking for their eye drops and to not to have to nterrupt what they are doing throughout the day to keep their eyes from drying out.
Third, the LipiFlow treatment gives you far greater choice. Many patients find that not only can they now choose to wear contact lenses, but that their increased productivity at work and school gives them greater options in terms of career and life decisions.
When taking into consideration these larger concerns, the one-time LipiFlow treatment cost can be better assessed.
Where To Find LipiFlow Treatment Locations
Since LipiFlow treatment in the USA is still relatively new, not all ophthalmologists offer the LipiFlow Thermal Pulsation treatment yet. Many ophthalmologists are still beginning to familiarize themselves with the treatment.
It is, however, possible to find LipiFlow treatment providers virtually anywhere where you live in the United States. Here in Southern California, for example, there are a handful of providers, such as the Glendale Dry Eye Clinic and the Beverly Hills Dry Eye Clinic.
If you have been suffering from the debilitating effects of dry eyes, you owe it to yourself to find out about this revolutionary treatment. The LipiFlow Thermal Pulsation System will literally help you to see the world in a new light.
Make your appointment to find out more today!