Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) therapy
Intense Regulated Pulsed Light (IRPL)
Intense Regulated Pulsed Light (IRPL) therapy is a gentle and non-invasive procedure that uses specific wavelengths of light to treat dry eye. IRPL therapy has been proven to improve tear film quality and it only takes a few minutes, sitting comfortably in a chair. It stimulates the parasympathetic nerve around the eyes to improve the flow of lipids (or oils) from the meibomian glands in your eyelids. The oils in your tears are an essential component that protects your tear film and reduces tear evaporation. If you suffer from dry eye caused by meibomian gland dysfunction, IRPL therapy may be a great option for you.
At The Eyewear Shop, we use the TEARSTIM which has been developed and manufactured in France.
Meibomian gland dysfunction
Healthy meibomian glands are important for producing the oily layer of your tear film. This layer sits on the outermost surface of the tear film and prevents the tears from evaporating. Meibomian glands can be come dysfunctional, blocked, and inflamed for reasons including genetics, skin conditions such as rosacea and eczema, some medications, or lifestyle factors such as excessive screen use. Abnormal meibomian gland function can lead to a condition called blepharitis, which is an inflammation of the eyelids. Although blepharitis is quite common, any degree greater than mild blepharitis can impact your quality of life.
Evaporative Dry Eye
- Sore, gritty, and irritable eyes
- Excessive watering
- Red and uncomfortable eyes, especially at the end of the day
- Constant blinking
- Blocked oil glands around the lids known as styes (or internal hordeolum/chalazions)
- Blurred vision
How does IRPL work?
The procedure typically takes between 20 and 30 minutes and is performed in-office. The number of treatments required varies depending on the severity of the dry eye condition, but most patients require between three and five treatments spaced several weeks apart.
During the procedure, the patient wears protective eyewear and a cooling gel is applied to the skin around the eyes to minimize any discomfort. The IPL device is then placed close to the patient's eyes, and a series of light pulses are emitted. The pulses usually cause a mild sensation of warmth or tingling, but most patients find the procedure to be comfortable and pain-free.
After the procedure, patients may experience some temporary redness or swelling around the eyes, but this typically subsides within a few hours. Patients are advised to avoid exposure to bright sunlight and wear sunglasses for a few days following the treatment.
Who is not suitable?
- Tattoos on the facial areas of the cheek (people with eyeliner and eyebrow tattoos are still suitable for IRPL treatment).
- People who are photosensitive (certain medications, immunocompromised).
- Sunburnt or have been exposed to high levels of UV within the past 10 days.
- Skin type 6 (very dark skin).
- Under 18 years.
The next stepContact us for a consultation with our optometrist to determine your suitability for IPL dry eye treatment.