Purpose: To investigate the efficacy of topical carbomer-based lipid-containing artificial tears (CLAT) and hyaluronate (HU) in patients with dry eye disease (DED) based on serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25HD) levels and cholecalciferol (vitamin D) supplementation.
Methods: A total of 116 patients with DED from June 2015 to June 2016 were included. The participants were divided into the vitamin D deficiency (VDD) group and the non-VDD group according to their serum 25HD levels. The patients determined the ways of cholecalciferol supplementation. Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI) score, visual analog pain scale score, lid hyperemia, tear breakup time (TBUT), corneal fluorescein staining score, and Schirmer test were compared between baseline and 2 weeks posttreatment after topical applications and between before and after cholecalciferol supplementation.
Results: The OSDI and visual analog pain scale scores of both VDD and non-VDD groups decreased after application of topical CLAT and HU compared with baseline values (P < 0.05 for all, paired t test). TBUT, corneal fluorescein staining score, and lid hyperemia in the VDD group remained unaffected by topical CLAT and HU, whereas those in the non-VDD group were improved (3.2 ± 1.7 vs. 4.1 ± 2.2, 0.5 ± 0.7 vs. 0.4 ± 0.6, and 2.2 ± 0.8 vs. 1.9 ± 0.7 in the non-VDD group, P = 0.001, 0.030, and 0.012, respectively). OSDI score, TBUT, and lid margin hyperemia were improved in the intramuscular group after cholecalciferol supplementation compared with pretreatment (33.2 ± 23.2 vs. 28.5 ± 21.9, 3.5 ± 1.9 vs. 6.0 ± 2.5, and 2.2 ± 0.7 vs. 1.2 ± 0.8, P < 0.05, Wilcoxon rank test).
Conclusions: The effect of topical CLAT and HU was dependent on serum 25HD levels. Cholecalciferol supplementation enhanced the efficacy of topical treatment and may be a useful adjuvant therapy for patients with DED refractory to topical lubricants.