Font Size
A
A
A
1

Dry Eye Syndrome


Topic Overview

Dry eye syndrome (keratoconjunctivitis sicca) occurs when the tear glands do not produce enough tears, causing your eyes to feel itchy, scratchy, and irritated. It is more common in older adults and in those with autoimmune diseases, such as arthritis.

Wearing contact lenses and smoking cigarettes may increase your risk for dry eye syndrome. Dry eyes also may be caused by certain medications, such as diuretics, antihistamines, decongestants, and antidepressants.

Try a nonprescription artificial tears solution, such as Akwa Tears, Duratears, or HypoTears. Do not use eyedrops that reduce redness (such as Visine) to treat dry eyes.

If artificial tears do not help, call a doctor. Excessive dryness can damage your eyes.

Related Information

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerWilliam H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerH. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine
Last RevisedNovember 2, 2011
1

eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

To learn more visit Healthwise.org

© 1995-2012 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.






Medical Dictionary