Prevalence of dry eye disease and its risk factors in visual display terminal users: the Osaka study

Am J Ophthalmol. 2013 Oct;156(4):759-66. doi: 10.1016/j.ajo.2013.05.040. Epub 2013 Jul 24.


Purpose: To investigate tear function and prevalence of dry eye disease (DED) in visual display terminal (VDT) users.

Design: Cross-sectional study.

Methods: Six hundred and seventy-two young and middle-aged Japanese office workers who used VDT completed questionnaires and underwent dry eye testing. We estimated the prevalence of DED using logistic regression analysis to examine associations between DED and possible risk factors. The ocular surface feature, prevalence of DED, and risk factors were evaluated.

Results: Of the 672 workers, 561 (83.5%, mean age: 43.3 ± 9.1 years) completed the questionnaire. The percentage of women with a composite outcome of definite DED or probable DED was 76.5%, which was higher than that among men (60.2%; odds ratio [OR] = 2.00; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.29-3.10, P = .002). Workers over 30 years of age had a higher risk of DED (OR = 2.22; 95% CI, 1.06-4.66), as did workers using a VDT >8 hours per day (OR = 1.94; 95% CI, 1.22-3.09). Average Schirmer value was 18.7 ± 11.7 mm and tear break-up time (TBUT) was 4.0 ± 2.5 seconds (78.6% of study participants had TBUT ≤5 seconds).

Conclusions: DED is prevalent among young to middle-aged Japanese VDT users. Ophthalmic findings revealed short TBUT and corneal staining accompanied by normal Schirmer test values. Increased risk for DED was noted for women aged over 30 years and prolonged VDT use. Measures to modify the adverse impact of VDT use on the ocular surface may provide a positive impact on public health and quality of life for office workers using VDTs.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Computer Terminals* / statistics & numerical data
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Dry Eye Syndromes / diagnosis
  • Dry Eye Syndromes / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Japan / epidemiology
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Tears / physiology
  • Time Factors
  • Young Adult