eurotimes.org
EUROTIMES STORIES

Putting European Dry Eye Research Centre Stage

In an interview with Contributing Editor Dermot McGrath, Professor Christophe Baudouin, President of the European Dry Eye Society (EuDES), explains why he believes the time is right for a new society dedicated to dry eye disease.

Dermot McGrath

Posted: Monday, November 1, 2021

In an interview with Contributing Editor Dermot McGrath, Professor Christophe Baudouin, President of the European Dry Eye Society (EuDES), explains why he believes the time is right for a new society dedicated to dry eye disease.

ET: WHY DO WE NEED A NEW SOCIETY DEVOTED SPECIFICALLY TO DRY EYE?

I think there are a few good reasons why the timing is right. Some ophthalmic societies already deal to some extent with dry eye. There are several important regional dry eye societies such as the Japanese Dry Eye Society and the Asian Dry Eye Society, and internationally we have the Tear Film and Ocular Surface Society (TFOS). I was part of TFOS from the outset and worked with other European colleagues as part of the different dry eye workshops. That planted the idea perhaps there was a need and space for a society made up of European dry eye experts. The collaboration between our European colleagues was already very strong and we have been extremely active in dry eye research in recent years, publishing a number of consensus papers and literature reviews. So, it made sense to try to extend that collaboration further and bring these dynamic European research teams together in a more formal structure.

ET: HAS DRY EYE DISEASE NOT BEEN GIVEN SUFFICIENT CONSIDERATION BY THE OPHTHALMIC COMMUNITY?

I think it is not really disputed that dry eye has been something of a neglected disease for the past few decades, especially when we compare it to blinding diseases such as glaucoma, AMD, corneal dystrophies, keratoconus, and so forth. It was often considered an inconvenience or annoyance rather than a serious condition. But it is a very common and potentially disabling disease and can have a huge impact on patients’ quality of life.

There has been a shift in this perception over the past few years with a broader recognition of the importance of dry eye and its relevance to contact lens wear, cataract and refractive surgery, autoimmune eyelid diseases, skin or eyelid diseases, glaucoma, topical or systemic medications, and so forth. Dry eye is present in many diseases, and it makes sense to try to bring our knowledge together under one umbrella.

ET: WHAT WILL BE THE PRIMARY AIMS OF EUDES?

We have seen a lot of breakthrough research in many aspects of dry eye disease in the past few years, including inflammation, corneal nerves, wound healing, neuropathic pain, and many others. Our scientific research in the pathophysiology of the disease has advanced considerably and focused a lot of interest in the field of dry eye. One of our key goals will be to share this cutting-edge scientific knowledge and practical skills with other European experts, as well as anyone interested in dry eye disease. We already had an excellent programme for the first EuDES Congress in June and plan on building on this success for our future meetings.

Another goal will be to foster national societies. I hope the existence of a European Dry Eye Society will serve as a catalyst for experts to form their own national groups. The advantage is that the experts are well-identified country by country and can also collaborate and participate at a European level. The European Glaucoma Society has achieved this type of structure in its own speciality, and we would like to develop something similar in dry eye as well.

More information on EuDES at https://www.dryeye-society.com/

Christophe Baudouin MD, PhD is Chairman, Department III of Ophthalmology: Centre Hospitalier National d’Ophtalmologie des Quinze-Vingts, Paris, and Editor-in-chief of the French Journal of Ophthalmology.

cbaudouin@15-20.fr


Latest Articles


escrs members advert