Increased tear evaporation in eyes with keratoconjunctivitis sicca

Arch Ophthalmol. 1983 Apr;101(4):557-8. doi: 10.1001/archopht.1983.01040010557003.


The terms dry eye and keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS) imply a condition of highly reduced or absent tear film that often is not clinically demonstrable despite the presence of other signs and symptoms. In 52 patients with KCS symptoms, either with or without tear volume reduction as measured by Schirmer's basic secretion test, we found a statistically significant increase in water evaporation rate from the tear film when compared with normal subjects. Such an increased evaporation rate might account for the tear hypertonicity known to be associated with KCS and postulated to be responsible for ocular surface damage. Thus, we propose to identify this group of paradoxically wet "dry eyes" as a "syndrome of increased tear evaporation", which better describes the pathogenesis of the ocular condition.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Keratoconjunctivitis / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Tears / physiology*