Purpose: To compare the efficacy of vitamin A (retinyl palmitate) and cyclosporine A 0.05% eye drops in treating patients with dry eye disease.
Design: Prospective, randomized, controlled, parallel group study.
Methods: A total of 150 patients with defined dry eye disease participated (50 in each treatment group). In 3 identical clinical trials, patients were treated twice daily with cyclosporine A 0.05%, or four times daily with retinyl palmitate 0.05%, or with neither cyclosporine or retinyl palmitate. Adjunctive treatment with preservative-free artificial tears was undertaken four times daily in all 3 groups. Corneal fluorescein staining results, Schirmer tear test (without anesthesia) results, tear film break-up time (BUT), dry eye symptom score, and impression cytologic analysis results were obtained before treatment and at the first, second, and third months after initiation of treatment.
Results: Both vitamin A eye drops and topical cyclosporine A 0.05% treatments led to significant improvement in blurred vision, tear film BUT, Schirmer I score results, and impression cytologic findings in patients with dry eye syndrome (P < .05) compared to the control group treated with preservative-free artificial tears alone.
Conclusions: Both vitamin A eye drops and topical cyclosporine A 0.05% treatments are effective for the treatment of dry eye disorder.