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Image: From left – Professor Ludwig Heindl, Dr Keith Pine and Dr Alexander Rokohl at the University of Cologne, Germany

For the past 10 years SOVS and the NZ National Eye Centre has carried out research into Ocular Prosthetics. Dr Keith Pine, Associate Professor Rob Jacobs and Oculoplastic Surgeon Dr Brian Sloan make up the small group principally involved in this research and so far, they have published eight papers in the world’s first evidence based textbook on prosthetic eyes.  They have also initiated research collaborations with the School of Psychology, Massey University (four published papers) and the Department of Ophthalmology, University of Cologne (6 published papers).

The latest paper from the Cologne collaboration was published this June. It describes dry anophthalmic socket syndrome (DASS) for the first time using a standardised clinical evaluation of symptoms and signs. The new definition is a modified version of the dry eye syndrome definition accepted by the definition and classification subcommittee of the international dry eye workshop 2007.

DASS is a disease of the socket surface characterised by a loss of tear film homeostasis accompanied by socket discomfort, in which tear film instability, conjunctival inflammation and damage, as well as eyelid and neurosensory abnormalities play etiological roles.

This new work is world leading and important for understanding a condition that affects the quality of life of the 63% of anophthalmic patients who complain of socket dryness.

Read about the research here.