• Will I need to continue drops for dry eye if I get plugs?


    Question:

    My ophthalmologist recommended getting punctal plugs for dry eye. Will I still have to use artificial tears to supplement treatment after they are inserted?


    Answer:

    There are three ways to treat dry eyes:

    • by decreasing evaporation of the tears you have (cool mist humidifier or punctal plugs)
    • by adding tear volume (artificial tears)
    • by stimulating/increasing tear production with medication (Restasis, Xiidra, Cequa).

    The plugs will likely help the dry eyes and if they do not help, you can always take them out. They prevent the tears from draining away as fast and should increase the comfort of the eyes. Whether tear supplements will be needed depends on how severe the dry eye is. The eye doctor will typically have a follow-up after the plugs are inserted to see if the eye moisture has increased. You and your ophthalmologist can decide at that time if any additional drops or medications are needed.


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