PURPOSE:: To evaluate the ocular surface parameters that could predict patient satisfaction after single application of vectored thermal pulsation (VTP). METHODS:: This is a retrospective interventional case series; it included consecutive patients who underwent bilateral VTP for management of symptomatic meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD). Patients received a full ocular surface evaluation. The outcome was patient subjective improvement during the first 3–4 months after 3 follow-up visits. For analysis, patients were divided into responders and nonresponders. RESULTS:: Forty-nine patients received bilateral treatment, with 32 patients (65.3%) reporting subjective improvement after treatment. Responders had lower tear production (6.9 ± 5.9 mm vs. 13.6 ± 6.8 mm; t test P = 0.002), a higher corneal staining score (4.4 ± 5.0 vs. 0.43 ± 1.1; t test P = 0.003), and a higher conjunctival staining score (3.1 ± 2.4 vs. 1.5 ± 1.8; t test P = 0.023) and presented with a higher tear osmolarity (319.7 ± 23.22 mOsm/L vs. 306.9 ± 9.0 mOsm/L; t test P = 0.029) than the nonresponder group. We found no association between patient age, tear breakup time, Ocular Surface Disease Index score, tear lipid layer thickness, or MGD grading score, as measured before intervention, with patient-perceived success of treatment. No complications to treatment were noted, and no patient reported worsening of preexisting symptoms on follow-up. CONCLUSIONS:: VTP can be effective in treating dry eye symptoms of patients with MGD. Our data show that objective findings of dry eye, as evidenced by lower tear production, higher corneal and conjunctival staining scores, and higher osmolarity, tend to be markers present in the group of patients responding positively to VTP.
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