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Dry eye syndrome

  • Alternative Names

    Keratitis sicca; Xerophthalmia; Keratoconjunctivitis sicca


    Treatments may include:

    • Hot compresses or eyelash cleaning
    • Lubricating ointments (in more severe cases)
    • Medications such as Restasis, topical corticosteroids, and oral tetracycline and doxyccycline
    • Tiny plugs placed in the tear drainage ducts to help the tears stay on the surface of the eye
    • Wetting drops called artificial tears

    Surgery may be used if the eyelids are in an abnormal position.

    Support Groups

    Expectations (prognosis)

    Most patients with dry eye have only discomfort, and no vision loss. With severe cases, the clear window on the front of the eye (cornea) may become damaged or infected.


    Ulcers or infections of the cornea are serious complications.

    Calling your health care provider

    See your health care provider immediately if you have dry eyes and have:

    • A sudden increase in discomfort or redness
    • A sudden decrease in vision