Advanced Solutions For Dry Eye Disease

Goal is to treat underlying issues of meibomian gland dysfunction.

Ted Garber using a computer

Taking frequent breaks from the computer eases Ted’s eye fatigue.

Ted Garber serves as CEO of a digital marketing and tech agency that helps companies promote their business and brand. He also owns and operates a working space called Coastal Collaborative.

“It’s an office rental where people can come in and work for the day,” says Ted, 39. “Instead of going to Starbucks or the library, people can come to our office building and work in a quiet professional space.”

Like his customers, Ted spends a lot of time staring at computer screens. Several years ago, he began to experience the negative effects of prolonged computer use when he developed dry eye disease.

“I’ve suffered with dry eye for the last six years,” Ted shares. “It caused my eyes to become dry, itchy and painful. They also felt gritty and became fatigued, all things that you would expect after staring at a computer screen for hours on end.”

Ted sought medical help for the problem soon after it began but quickly became frustrated with the poor results of the recommended treatments and the failure of several physicians to determine the root cause of the problem.

“The ophthalmologists and eye centers I visited didn’t treat the underlying issues,” he laments. “They just offered treatments that gave me a brief respite from my symptoms. Finally, I Googled dry eye experts in Brevard. That’s how I found Dry Eye Center of Florida.”

Modern Facility, Advanced Treatment

Founded by Dr. Jenifer Ramsower, Dry Eye Center of Florida is the first and only clinic in Central Florida dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of dry eye disease. It is at this new and modern facility that the latest research and technology are combined to successfully relieve patients’ symptoms and achieve the best patient outcomes.

Dr. Ramsower, who has provided comprehensive eye care in Brevard County since 2005, has spent the past 10 years researching and studying dry eye disease and the most advanced treatments for it. She explains that an inadequate amount of oil, tears or both is what causes dry eye disease.

“The tear film must contain a proper balance of water and oil,” Dr. Ramsower educates. “In Mr. Garber’s case, he was producing a sufficient amount of tears, but the oil layer of his tear film was severely inadequate.

“A thin oil layer is the result when the oil glands in the eyelids — the meibomian glands — become blocked and do not function properly. This is called meibomian gland dysfunction, or MGD.”

“Thank to Dr. Ramsower, my eyes feel much better now.” – Ted

In addition to MGD, Ted was also suffering from a buildup of debris along his eyelashes that caused irritation and itchiness. He also had ocular rosacea, which causes inflammation at the lid margin that can plug up the oil glands and cause an unstable tear film.

“Rosacea is abnormal blood vessel growth in the skin,” Dr. Ramsower details. “It is common in the nose and cheek area and can travel up toward the eyes and cause inflammation of the eyelids. Eighty percent of rosacea patients suffer from MGD and dry eye disease.”

To address the MGD and ocular rosacea, Dr. Ramsower used a combination of two FDA-certified advanced treatments. One was the Johnson&Johnson® LipiFlow® Thermal Pulsation System. The other featured the use of the Lumenis® Optima Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) to decrease inflammation.

“During a LipiFlow treatment, we place sterile activators inside the patient’s eyes,” Dr. Ramsower explains. “This 12-minute automated treatment in the office is computer controlled and an extremely precise way to clear meibomian gland obstruction and restore healthy gland function.

“Lumenis Optima IPL helps to seal off the abnormal blood vessels that cause inflammation in the surrounding ocular tissue. Improved meibomian gland function, greater tear stability and a reduction of dry eye symptoms have been reported following treatment.”

A Meaningful Outcome

“Dr. Ramsower explained to me that MGD is common and can be exacerbated by screen time and other factors,” Ted reports. “She discovered that MGD was the underlying issue behind my dry, itchy eyes, and it was because that issue wasn’t being treated that my symptoms worsened.

“I’m thankful that Dr. Ramsower has the technology and experience to treat the underlying issues of dry eye disease and that she was able to put together a good treatment plan that resulted in a big improvement in a short period of time. Thanks to Dr. Ramsower, my eyes feel much better now.”

Dr. Ramsower also coached Ted on better ways to manage his screen time and reduce other environmental factors that contribute to his dry eye symptoms.

“She encouraged me to start taking regular breaks from the computer, to perform blinking exercises and to do some other things during the course of the day that will give my eyes a bit of a break,” Ted reveals. “Overall, I’ve noticed a big improvement since I first saw Dr. Ramsower.

“It was definitely worth going to Dry Eye Center of Florida for a consultation because Dr. Ramsower is great. She takes her time evaluating the patient and really listens closely, unlike a lot of other doctors. I would recommend her and Dry Eye Center of Florida to anyone who has dry, itchy or irritated eyes.”

© FHCN article by Patti DiPanfilo. Photo by Jordan Pysz. mkb
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    • Dry Eye Center of Florida

      Dr. Jenifer Ramsower is committed to the advanced diagnosis and treatment of dry eye. Dry eye is a chronic and progressive condition that affects millions. Recent research into the causes of dry eye and the importance of maintaini... Read More

    • Jenifer Ramsower, OD

      Jenifer Ramsower, OD, earned her Bachelor of Science degree in life science and her Doctor of Optometry degree with honors from Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale.  She completed a residency in ocular disease at the Baltimore VA Me... Read More