To heal severe ocular damages such as Dry Eye Disease (DED), Sjögren’s Syndrome or others, lubricating and nutrient properties are necessary. “Commercially available artificial tears alleviate biomechanical trauma caused by dry eye disease but lack biological properties such as nutrients that promote ocular surface renewal and immunological defence.”2
Blood serum lubricates and provides nourishing substances. It contains a large number of healing factors that are present in human tears. Both serum and platelet-rich plasma contain growth factors and vitamins and immunoglobulins, some in higher concentrations than in natural tears. These epitheliotrophic factors are mainly responsible for the therapeutic action in ocular surface pathologies.
“SED have proven effective for the treatment of complex dry eye disease, in addition to a wide range of clinical conditions causing OSD (Steven-Johnson syndrome, Sjögren’s syndrome, persistent epithelial defects, GvHD, post-LASIK dry eye, neurotrophic keratopathy, diabetes mellitus, superior limbic keratoconjunctivitis, recurrent corneal erosions, aniridic limbal stem cell deficiency) and as supportive therapy for ocular surface reconstruction and stem cell therapy.”2
Severe cases of dry eyes have a major effect on patients’ quality of life, as they suffer extreme pain, sensitivity to light, eye infections, and loss of visual acuity. Injuries such as ocular surface toxicity, as well as chemical, thermal, mechanical or other injuries, and inherited ocular surface diseases, are further examples that demonstrate the wide range of promising SED treatment options.
Serum Eye Drops are usually used as a second- or third-line therapy. If patients fail to achieve adequate relief from traditional treatments, such as prescription eye drops, warm compresses, or eyelid treatments, then SEDs can come into play.
1 Autologous serum eye drops for ocular surface disorders ©British Journal of Ophthalmology, 2004 Nov; 88(11).1467-1474
2 Eye (2017), 1-16 © 2017 Macmillan Publishers Limited, part of Springer Nature. All rights reserved 0950-222X/17
3 Parwez Hossain: Reducing the burden of ocular surface disease with serum eye drops, March 30, 2021 © The Author(s), under the exclusive licence to The Royal College of Ophthalmologists
4 Kristine Brennan: Thicker than water: Autologous Serum, Review of Ophthalmology, published 5 November 2016
5 Comparison of epitheliothrophic factors in platelet-rich-plasma versus autologous serum and their treatment efficacy in dry eye disease, Chanatip Metheetrairut et al, Nature Scientific Reports, (2022)12:890
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