Bausch + Lomb shares findings from State of Dry Eye survey

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The survey found that most participants may not know that their symptoms could be associated with eye dryness, including redness, fluctuating vision, a scratch, gritty, tired, or heavy feeling in the eye, or overall eye irritation.

Woman rubbing eyes with glasses in hand Image Credit: AdobeStock/AndreyPopov

Image Credit: AdobeStock/AndreyPopov

Bausch + Lomb has shared data from its inaugural State of Dry Eye survey, revealing information on patients’ experiences with dry eye symptoms and their knowledge regarding the condition. The survey was conducted online in the US by The Harris Poll on behalf of Bausch + Lomb and included a total of 2003 participants aged 18 years and older, according to a news release.1

“The prevalence of dry eye is growing, particularly among a younger demographic in large part due to modern lifestyles and heavy digital use,” said Yehia Hashah, MD, executive vice president of Research and Development and chief medical officer at Bausch + Lomb, in the release. “The survey results underscore the importance of raising awareness of dry eye so sufferers are empowered to speak with an eye care professional and seek relief. That’s why we developed KnowYourDryEye.com to help facilitate these conversations.”

Of the participants in the survey, 461 were considered “sufferers” of symptoms of dry eye disease (DED), defined as those who often or always experience eye dryness and/or have been diagnosed by a healthcare professional with DED, and 1542 were non-sufferers. The survey was conducted from April 15-23, 2024.1

The survey found that most participants may not know that their symptoms could be associated with eye dryness, including redness, fluctuating vision, a scratch, gritty, tired, or heavy feeling in the eye, or overall eye irritation. Notably, although 38% of participants reported tired eyes, 27% reported sensitivity to light, and 19% reported redness of the eye, 15% reported experiencing eye dryness, according to the release.1

Additionally, 70% of the participants stated that they did not know much about preventing or treating dry eye. A majority of participants (66%) also did not know that symptoms of dry eyes are increasingly present in younger people, which is likely the result of increased screen time, among other factors, the release said. Over half of participants with dry eye symptoms (52%) also stated that they believe dry eyes are difficult to address and something people must learn to live with. Forty-four percent of participants also were unaware that untreated DED can lead to vision loss, among other complications.1

A large majority of participants also found that their dry eye symptoms were impacting their daily lives. Three out of 4 “sufferers” of dry eye stated they found the condition “extremely or very bothersome,” with 3 out of 10 saying their symptoms have worsened over time. Additionally, 8 out of 10 “sufferers” reported being constantly aware of how their eyes feel, with 46% reporting that their symptoms are so severe that they can “hear themselves blink.” Those with dry eye symptoms also stated that their symptoms made the biggest impact their reading (45%), device use (35%), and driving (31%).1

Participants also reported a lack of routine visits to their eye care providers. About 2 in 5 participants stated that they do not visit their eye care provider at least once a year.1

“Most people think of dry eye as a minor nuisance, but the truth is it can drastically affect one’s daily life,” said Rebecca Petris, cofounder and president of the Dry Eye Foundation, in the release. “Early symptoms are often misunderstood, downplayed, ignored, or self-treated. People need to know their symptoms warrant a visit to the eye doctor, so they can get an accurate diagnosis and treatment. For people with dry eye, the good news is treatment and symptom management options are available. People are finding relief.”

Reference:
  1. Millions of Americans experience dry eye symptoms, yet new national survey shows sufferers struggle to find relief. News release. Bausch + Lomb. July 8, 2024. Accessed July 8, 2024.
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