• Is it common in Sjogren's Syndrome to produce no reflex tears?


    Question:

    Is it common in Sjogren's Syndrome to produce no reflex tears? I produce no tears. If I get a tiny speck of anything, even water, in my eyes, it's very painful.


    Answer:

    Patients with Sjogren's Syndrome (an autoimmune disease that affects lubrication of the eyes) can suffer from very low tear production. In severe cases, this can affect reflex tearing (tears produced in response to pain or dry eye) as well as basal tear production (the normal production of tears that keep the eye lubricated). As the surface of the eye dries out, the eye’s nerve endings become more sensitized and even the slightest of provocations can cause pain, redness, and irritation. You should see your eye doctor to see if treatments such as steroids or other anti-inflammatories may be helpful.


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