Antibiotics for Dry Eyes

The tetracycline class of antibiotics, including doxycycline, tetracycline and minocycline, are often used to treat varying forms of meibomian gland dysfunction, also called MGD. Tetracyclines alter the chemistry of the meibomian glands and the oils they secrete, and improve the MGD related signs and symptoms. The tear film stays on the eye longer (Break Up Time) after 1-3 months of use.

Doxycycline box from the frontSimilar to the anti-inflammatory properties of tetracyclines, macrolides also have shown to help MGD. Azithromycin has shown some success in patients with MGD.

While it appears that antibiotics helps with MBD, it does not unblock obstructed meibomian glands. Therefore, many treatment plans may include strategies to unblock the glands, while simultaneously treating the MGD with antibiotics.


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