Restasis treatment for dry eyes

Discussion in 'Eye-Care' started by MSEagan, Feb 6, 2005.

  1. MSEagan

    MSEagan Guest

    I saw a commericial on TV for this medication. My eyes are severely dry, and
    about 5 years ago I had permanent plugs inserted in my lower lids. I also
    use a salve nightly as well as a humidifier. Lately my eyes have become
    unbearable and it is making computer work and all reading extremely
    uncomfortable. Even with the nighttime salve, my eyes hurt. So, I called my
    OD and asked him about Restasis. He said it is a good drug and gave me a
    prescription to try it. I would like to know what experience others out
    there have with this medication. Has it helped patients? How long does it
    take to help? Thanks.

    Marianne
     
    MSEagan, Feb 6, 2005
    #1
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  2. MSEagan

    Rocketman Guest

    Hi Marianne,

    I also have very dry eyes. I tried Restasis and it didn't help me. In
    fact, it seemed to irritate my eyes. Others have reported success with
    Restasis, so it's worth trying.

    Have you considered having your upper puncta plugged? You mentioned having
    the lowers permanently plugged, but not the uppers. I had the lowers
    plugged first with little or no relief. Once the uppers were plugged too,
    my eyes felt much better. This is something you may want to consider.

    Best wishes.
     
    Rocketman, Feb 7, 2005
    #2
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  3. MSEagan

    Neil Brooks Guest

    Take a look at: http://www.agingeye.net/mainnews/Restasis.pdf

    Restasis can take several months to produce results, but it seems to produce
    results in only a minority (~15%) of cases. It uses an ophthalmic
    preparation of cyclosporine--an immune suppresant drug given to organ
    transplant patients. Also, note that "Increased tear production was not
    seen in patients currently taking topical anti-inflammatory drugs or using
    punctal plugs." I have never been given a definitive answer to why this is,
    but it's possible that the simple fact is that Restasis was never /tested/
    with punctal plug patients.

    It is primarily effective in people whose dry eye condition is caused by an
    underlying autoimmune disorder (e.g., Rheumatoid Arthritis, Reiter's
    Syndrome, or Sjogren's Syndrome). If you don't have one of these conditions
    (usually diagnosed by a rheumatologist), then Restasis is unlikely to help
    you.

    Also, do a search on this forum for "dry eye." Much useful info has already
    been exchanged.

    Lastly, take a look at the Sjogren's Syndrome forum. Sjogren's patients
    have /terribly/ dry eyes. You can see their thoughts and experiences on
    many potential treatments. It can be found at:

    http://p073.ezboard.com/fsjsworldforumsfrm16

    Best of luck!

    Neil
     
    Neil Brooks, Feb 7, 2005
    #3
  4. MSEagan

    RM Guest

    I would echo what Neil said.
    In the majority of cases my patients have not seen a benefit with Restasis
    but a few have. Give it a try and maybe you will be one of the lucky ones.
    Be prepared-- it is expensive!

    ==========
     
    RM, Feb 7, 2005
    #4
  5. MSEagan

    MSEagan Guest

    This is my 4th day on the drop and is it possible it could be helping so
    soon? Even if I do not go with how my eyes feel (to avoid a possible placebo
    judgement), my eyes are not producing all the typical gunk on the contact
    lenses that they so frequently make on a typical day. As for feel, they
    still feel very dry, but this is the first day I have not had to remove my
    lenses because of the thick gunk.

    Marianne
     
    MSEagan, Feb 8, 2005
    #5
  6. MSEagan

    Neil Brooks Guest

    What you're experiencing is more likely just the pleasant effect of
    additional moisture in your eyes. This would reduce the irritation caused
    by your contact lenses and slow the accumulation of 'gunk' just by the
    rinsing effect of the drops.

    It doesn't /seem/ likely that the cyclosporine would have taken hold by now.

    In other words, it sounds like you're off to a good start. It may even get
    better!

    Good luck!

    Neil
     
    Neil Brooks, Feb 8, 2005
    #6
  7. MSEagan

    MSEagan Guest

    Thanks for your reply Neil. I considered that maybe it was merely the extra
    moisture from the drops, but
    I use the drops about 5AM and do not insert my contacts until around 8:30AM,
    after my long swim. Also, prior to using Restasis, I was using rewetting
    contact lens solution to prevent the gunk as it formed, but that would only
    provide relief for about 10 minutes before the gunk would reappear. Often I
    would completely remove the lenses, wash them and rewet them and still
    relief would only last minutes. This is why I today was such a different
    experience...no contact rewetting, no removal to wash and reinsert. They
    were good the entire time I wore them. Maybe it is as simple as some change
    in the weather and coincidence that I just started the drops.

    Marianne
     
    MSEagan, Feb 9, 2005
    #7
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