Inflammation is one of the main mechanisms common to all forms of dry eye. Since polyunsaturated acids are known to show biological anti-inflammatory properties, the aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of dietary n-6 and n-3 fatty acids in patients suffering from ocular dryness.

One hundred and eighty-one patients diagnosed with bilateral moderate dry eye who were already treated with lachrymal substitutes were randomized in a double-blind international study to receive placebo or Nutrilarm(®) capsules (combination of omega-3 and omega-6), twice a day for 6 months. In all subjects, dryness feeling, overall subjective comfort, and ocular symptoms (burning, stinging, sandy and/or gritty sensation, light sensitivity, reflex tearing, and ocular fatigue) were evaluated at each visit. Furthermore, fluorescein tests (break-uptime and Oxford scheme) and lissamine green test were performed at each visit. The Schirmer test was performed at inclusion and after 6 months of treatment.

After 6 months of supplementation with Nutrilarm(®), both the BUT scores and ocular fatigue were significantly improved when compared with placebo (P=0.036 and P=0.044, respectively). There was a trend in favor of Nutrilarm(®) in terms of the efficacy evaluated by the investigator (P=0.061). Fewer patients experienced a feeling of severe dryness with Nutrilarm(®) compared with placebo after 6 months of treatment (2.5 and 9.3%, respectively), but the difference was not statistically significant.

Oral administration of a double supplementation dietary n-6 and n-3 fatty acids present an additional therapeutic advantage in patients suffering from ocular dryness who were already treated with lachrymal substitutes.

PMID: 21696849

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