Purpose: To estimate the impact of dry eye disease (DED) on work performance and productivity in office workers using visual display terminals (VDTs).
Design: Cross-sectional study.
Methods: Six hundred seventy-two Japanese young and middle-aged office workers using VDTs completed a questionnaire that was designed to measured at-work performance deficits and productivity losses using the Japanese version of the Work Limitations Questionnaire, completed by e-mail. Using the Japanese dry eye diagnostic criteria, respondents were classified into 3 groups: definite DED, probable DED, and non DED.
Results: Of the 672 office workers, 553 subjects (82.3%), including 366 men and 187 women, completed the questionnaire and underwent clinical evaluation. As for the total workplace productivity loss, the non DED group demonstrated a loss of 3.56%, those with probable DED demonstrated a loss of 4.06%, and those with definite DED demonstrated a loss of 4.82%, indicating significantly worse performance and productivity (P = .014, trend test). For the 4 subscales, DED was associated with significantly lower on-the-job time management (P = .009, trend test) and combined mental performance and interpersonal functioning (P = .011, trend test). After controlling for age, sex, VDT working hours, and diagnosis of DED, time management, physical demands, and mental and interpersonal functioning showed a significant relationship to DED (each P > .05). Annual DED productivity losses were estimated to be $6160 per employee when measured by total production and $1178 per employee calculated by wage.
Conclusions: This study indicated that there is a significant impact of DED on the total productivity of Japanese VDT users.
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