PEMF for Chronic Dry Eye Treatment
What Is Chronic Dry Eye
Chronic Dry Eye is when your eyes fail to produce enough tears (lubrication to protect your eyes). It is a condition without a permanent solution. There are three common types of Chronic Dry Eye:
- Keratitis sicca (dryness and inflammation of the cornea)
- Keratoconjunctivitis sicca (dry eye that affects both the cornea and the conjunctiva)
- Dysfunctional tear syndrome (inadequate quality of tears)
Tears are comprised of water, oil, and mucus. They protect your eyes from infection, helping keep them healthy. There are two common causes of chronic dry eye:
- Increased tear evaporation (usually caused by external factors such as lack of blinking, wind, smoke, contact lenses, air blowing in the eye, etc.)
- Imbalanced makeup of tears (may be caused by a medical condition, medications, diet, body chemistry, etc.)
PEMF for Chronic Dry Eye Treatment
If you think you have chronic dry eye see an optometrist to be sure. If you know you have chronic dry eye caused by inflammation, PEMF may be a good treatment option to add to your chronic dry eye regimen. Common chronic dry eye treatments include lifestyle changes and artificial tear eye drops, both of which you will likely need for the rest of your life. However, PEMF for chronic dry eye treatment may be able to provide you with long-lasting relief.
What is PEMF for Chronic Dry Eye Treatment?
Pulsating Electromagnetic Fields (PEMF) stimulate cell metabolism. By stimulating cell metabolism, a chain of processes in the body occurs that may lead to overall improvement of health without adverse side effects. Cells produce energy, called ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate). ATP is essential for body function, like building up and breaking down molecules and transporting substances across cell membranes.
To produce energy, cells need oxygen as well as roughly 90 other substances (including enzymes, glucose, and nutrients). In addition to energy, cells also produce carbon dioxide, water, and waste. For a cell to execute and control all these processes good cell metabolism is required. Low-performance levels and chronic disease are the results of impaired cell metabolism. It is believed that every illness is the consequence of impaired cell metabolism.
Who Has Chronic Dry Eye?
There are people who are more likely to suffer from chronic dry eye. Are you one of them?
- Older than 50? Tear production decreases as you age.
- Female? Hormonal changes as a result of pregnancy, birth control and menopause all contribute to decreased tear production.
- Poor diet. A diet low in vitamin A (liver, carrots, broccoli) and low in omega-3 fatty acids (fish, walnuts, vegetable oils) contribute to poor eye health.
- Contact lens wearers may find their lenses inhibit tear production.
- People with certain medical conditions (diabetics, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, scleroderma, Sjogren’s syndrome, thyroid disorders).
- Some medications may cause chronic dry eye as a side effect (antihistamines, decongestants, hormone replacement therapy, antidepressants, medications for high blood pressure, acne, birth control, and Parkinson’s disease).
- People who’ve had laser eye surgery may experience dry eye from the procedure (this may or may not be permanent).
- Inflammation may cause tear gland damage, in turn, chronic dry eye.
- Radiation may also cause tear gland damage, leading to chronic dry eye.
Symptoms of Chronic Dry Eye
Chronic dry eye usually affects both eyes. Some indications are:
- Stinging eyes
- Burning eyes
- Scratchy eyes
- Stringy mucus in/around the eyes
- Light sensitivity
- Redness in the eyes
- Feeling like you have something in your eyes
- Discomfort when wearing contact lenses
- Irritation when nighttime driving
- Watery eyes
- Blurred vision
- Eye fatigue
Side-effects of Chronic Dry Eye
People with chronic dry eye may experience an array of complications, such as:
- Eye infections (tears protect the surface of your eyes from infection)
- Damage to the surface of the eyes (left untreated, chronic dry eyes may lead to inflammation, abrasion of the corneal surface, corneal ulcer and vision problems)
- Discomfort (chronic dry eye may make everyday activities difficult, like reading for example)
Sometimes you can’t help where life takes you. Knowing that you might not always be able to avoid situations that trigger your chronic dry eye, you can prepare for them. When possible, you can avoid or work to improve situations that lend themselves to chronic dry eye. For example:
- Avoid air blowing in your eyes (car heaters, hair dryers, air conditioners, fans, wind, etc.)
- Add moisture to the air (a humidifier in winter, for example)
- Wear protective eyewear
- Stop or don’t smoke and avoid smoke
- Use artificial tears
- Blink often and take breaks when reading, driving and working at a computer
PEMF for Chronic Dry Eye Treatment and Other Eye Conditions
Quoted from a study evaluating treatment by pulsed electromagnetic fields on hyphema (blood in the eye): “In previous clinical studies, it has been shown that low-frequency pulsed electromagnetic fields (PEMF) have a beneficial effect in wound healing, resorption of inflammatory edema or bleeds in various organs by stimulating metabolic processes, blood circulation and activating cell proliferation. In the eye, the successful use of PEMF has been reported in corneal wound healing, dry eye syndrome, acute keratoconus, glaucoma, endocrine ophthalmopathy, and various optic nerve lesions.”
Studies have shown that PEMF may also benefit eye diseases including:
- Macular degeneration
- Diabetic retinopathy
- Retinitis pigmentosa
PEMF is safe, non-invasive and stimulates cell metabolism, improving oxygenation of the blood and jumpstarting the body’s natural healing processes. Among the notable benefits of PEMF treatment is a reduction in inflammation a key component helping eyes heal. PEMF for chronic dry eye treatment may be particularly effective because it increases microcirculation in the eye which decreases inflammation and promotes nerve repair.
Evaluation of Treatment by Pulsed Electromagnetic Fields in a Rabbit Hyphema Model. Gregor Wollensak and Felix Muchamedjarowa from the Department of Ophthalmology, Universitätsklinikum CGC; and Richard Funk from the Department of Anatomy, Technical University of Dresden, Dresden, Germany