Abstract

Dry eye (DE) disease is a multifactorial disease of the outer ocular surface characterized by several ocular symptoms and mainly by tear film instability. We have developed an optical imaging system, the tear film imager (TFI), which is the first instrument that can directly image the muco-aqueous tear layer physical dimension in vivo and evaluate its parameters in a noninvasive mode with nanometer axial resolution. This instrument provides quantified information about many attributes of the tear film, including muco-aqueous layer thickness, lipid layer thickness, thickness change rate, and the break-up time. The TFI performances are based on simultaneous acquisition of large field of view (FOV) imagery and fast spectrometric measurement of the interference from the thin tear film sublayers. Herein, after describing the instrument and the methodology of the measurements, we use a tear film mock-up to quantify device accuracy (2.2 nm) and repeatability (0.25 nm standard deviation). In conclusion, we present a new technology for the assessment of the tear film with an unprecedented axial resolution and excellent accuracy and reproducibility.

© 2019 Optical Society of America

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