Global improvement in meibomian glands after chalazion surgery demonstrated by meibography

Saleem Hanna, Morris Hartstein, Abed Mukari, Slava Shor, George Habib, Shirin Hamed Azzam*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To evaluate the use of meibography as an objective measure of the effects of incision & curettage (I&C) chalazion surgery on meibomian gland loss and morphology as well as dry eye syndrome. Methods: This prospective, interventional clinical study included adult patients with a primary chalazion which persisted despite conservative treatment. All patients underwent I&C surgery. The following parameters were compared both preoperatively and 21 days postoperatively: meibography, tear breakup time (TBUT), Schirmer test, meibum expression, tear meniscus height, meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD) grading, and the Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI). Results: Thirty eyelids were enrolled in the study. The mean age ± SD was 40.56 ± 13.94 years. Meibography demonstrated a significant decrease in meibomian gland loss (P = 0.00) and improvement in morphology. The most common meibomian gland pathology preoperatively noted was morphological signs of atrophy that included fluffy areas and tortuous glands. Both of these findings improved postoperatively (P = 0.04 and P = 0.02, respectively). There were a significant change in MGD grading and a significant decrease in meibum expression score postoperatively (P = 0.00). TBUT and tear meniscus height also improved significantly (P = 0.00 and P = 0.003, respectively). The OSDI score improved significantly as well (P = 0.00). Conclusion: While incision and drainage surgery is a time-honored, standard treatment for chalazion, meibography now demonstrates a global improvement in the meibomian glands, not just the ones involved with the chalazion. In addition to the improvements in the clinical and dry eye syndrome parameters improvements, meibography findings demonstrate that early I&C surgery restores the meibomian glands architecture significantly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2591-2598
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Ophthalmology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Chalazion, meibography
  • Dry eye
  • Incision and curettage
  • Meibomian gland loss
  • Meibomian gland morphology


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