Morphology and Function of Meibomian Glands and Other Tear Film Parameters in Junior High School Students

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We measured tear film parameters, including the morphology and function of meibomian glands, in junior high school students at 15 years of age.


A total of 111 eyes of 111 students (56 males and 55 females) were enrolled in the study. The ocular symptom score (0–14), after-school study time, lipid layer thickness (LLT) of the tear film, partial blink rate, lid margin abnormalities (0–4), tear film breakup time, corneal and conjunctival epithelial damage (fluorescein staining score, 0–9), meiboscore as determined by noncontact meibography (0–6), Schirmer test value, and meibum grade (0–3) were determined. The relationships between parameters were evaluated with the Spearman correlation coefficient (ρ).


The meiboscore was 2.8 ± 1.2, and the meibum grade was 1.8 ± 1.2. The meiboscore significantly correlated with the meibum grade (ρ = 0.272, P = 0.004), Schirmer test value (ρ = −0.220, P = 0.021), and LLT (ρ = −0.264, P = 0.005). The breakup time significantly correlated with LLT (ρ = 0.261, P = 0.006), meibum grade (ρ = −0.338, P < 0.001), and fluorescein staining score (ρ = −0.214, P = 0.025). The partial blink rate significantly correlated with the Schirmer test value (ρ = −0.240, P = 0.011). The meiboscore (P < 0.001) and meibum grade (P = 0.032) were significantly greater in males than in females.


The morphology and function of meibomian glands are altered even at 15 years of age, with the changes being more prominent in males than in females.

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