Taping the upper mask edge tied to decrease in dry eye symptoms among N95 users: Study
New Delhi: In a new study conducted by researchers from AIIMS, New Delhi, it was found that taping the top mask edge improves ocular surface stability, which coincides with a reduction in dry eye symptoms. The findings of this study were published in the American Journal of Ophthalmology.The goal of this prospective interventional before-and-after study was to determine how taping the upper...
New Delhi: In a new study conducted by researchers from AIIMS, New Delhi, it was found that taping the top mask edge improves ocular surface stability, which coincides with a reduction in dry eye symptoms. The findings of this study were published in the American Journal of Ophthalmology.
The goal of this prospective interventional before-and-after study was to determine how taping the upper mask edge influenced ocular surface stability, dry eye symptoms, and tear osmolarity in N95 mask users.
Fifty eyes from 50 healthcare professionals who commonly use N95 masks were included in the study. The subjects' pre-intervention, ocular surface characteristics, subjective dry eye score, and visual acuity were evaluated at the conclusion of an 8-hour shift while wearing an N95 face mask without taping the upper edge. The upper edge of the N95 mask was taped to the nasal bridge of all individuals at the start of the 8-hour shift the next day, and post-intervention evaluation was completed after the shift. The change in non-invasive tear break-up time was the primary outcome measure (NIBUT). Change in tear lipid layer thickness (LLT), symptom score, Schirmer I test, TBUT, tear meniscus height (TMH), osmolarity, and visual acuity were secondary outcome measures.
The key findings of this study are as follow:
1. The cohort's average age was 26.73.67 years. Post-taping, ocular surface stability was considerably improved in terms of NIBUT, TBUT, LLT, TMH, corneal staining score, and tear osmolarity.
2. There was no statistically significant difference in visual acuity, Schirmer I, or OSDI score.
3. 68% of patients (SANDE version 2) reported symptom improvement, which associated strongly with changes in NIBUT (r=0.38), TMH (r=0.37), LLT (r=0.35), and TBUT (r=0.28).
In conclusion, the benefits of taping the top mask edge for a relatively short period of time in normal persons are demonstrated in this study; the benefits may be much more obvious when measured over a longer period of time and in known cases of dry eye. More research is needed to determine the long-term effectiveness of taping the upper mask edge in both healthy people and those suffering from dry eye disease. Because frequent face mask usage is expected to continue in the foreseeable future, it is advised to practice taping the upper mask edge, particularly in occupations that need continuous face mask wear for lengthy hours.
Nair S, Kaur M, Sah R, Titiyal JS. Impact of taping the upper mask edge on ocular surface stability and dry eye symptoms. Am J Ophthalmol. 2022:S0002-9394(22)00007-1. doi:10.1016/j.ajo.2022.01.006
Medical Dialogues consists of a team of passionate medical/scientific writers, led by doctors and healthcare researchers. Our team efforts to bring you updated and timely news about the important happenings of the medical and healthcare sector. Our editorial team can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.