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Background: Dry eye disease is one of the most frequently encountered ocular problems and yet limited prevalence data on Asian population is available in the literature.
Aims and Objective: To determine the incidence of dry eye in a sample population in Kuala Lumpur using the McMonnies dry eye questionnaire (MDEQ).
Methods: Around 900 subjects were invited to participate in this study. The MDEQ was distributed to all subjects and the survey was self administered. The results were analyzed using t-test and ANOVA.
Results: A total of 850 subjects completed the MDEQ with 375 (44.1%) males and 475 (55.9%) females. The age distribution was 353 (41.5%) under 25 years (Group 1), 247 (29.1%) between 25 to 45 years (Group 2) and 250 (29.4%) above 45 years (Group 3). Around 44% were Malays, 48.1% Chinese, 7.4% Indians and 0.5% from other races. 14.6% of the population was having dry eye. Mean score for all subjects were 9.38±5.63 with significantly higher score (10.01±5.86) for females than males (8.57 ±5.21) (p=0.02). No significant difference was detected between races (p=0.07). Following age, mean score for Group 1, 2 and 3 was 6.80± 4.01, 10.17±5.64 and 12.24±5.96 respectively with significant difference between Group 1 and other groups (p<0.05).
Conclusion: Around 15% of the sample population is having dry eye, with higher score in females and older age groups. The MDEQ should be considered by eye care practitioners for screening dry eye and the results may improve the management of dry eye problems in this region.
McMonnies dry eye questionnaire, dry eye, normal population, tears