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Arch Soc Esp Oftalmol. 2002 Sep;77(9):493-500.

[Validation of a questionnaire for the diagnosis of dry eye].

[Article in Spanish]

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Hospital Clínico Universitario San Carlos, Unidad de Superficie e Inflamación ocular, Madrid, España.



To develop and evaluate a questionnaire for diagnosis and follow-up of patients with symptoms suggestive of eye surface pathology. To evaluate the efficacy of dry eye treatment.


Samples were chosen among dry eye patients (n=44). A control group was chosen among the healthy population. The questionnaire was filled in at the beginning and end of the treatment with carbopol + polyvinyl alcohol (Siccafluid, Thea, Spain) four times a day. Initial and final punctuation was established and confronted with other classic diagnostic tests; fluorescein tear break up time, Schirmer test and Rose Bengal staining.


Red eyes, lid inflammation, discharge, dry eye, sandy and foreign body sensations, burning, itching, discomfort, pricking, tearing and photophobia got significantly better after treatment (p<0.05). Lid reddening, lid inflammation, flakes in lashes, sticky eyes in the morning, teary eyes, transitory blurring vision and heavy sensation didn't improve (p>0.05). Total punctuation was significantly reduced at one month of treatment (p<0.01). Validation of the test was done against other standard tests (Schirmer test and Rose Bengal). We found a sensitivity of 76% and specificity of 71.5% for Schirmer test and a sensibility of 77% and specificity of 65% if gold standard was Rose Bengal. Predictive value (positive and negative), global value of the test and likelihood ratios were also assessed.


This questionnaire is useful for diagnosis and follow-up of patients with dry eyes and other ocular surface symptoms. Carbopol + polyvinyl alcohol is useful for the treatment of patients with secretor tear insufficiency.

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