The effect of tear substitute and silicone oil on reepithelization of the cornea

D. D. Gaton*, H. Stiebel-Kalish, N. Loya, D. Weinberger, Y. Kashtan, A. Solomon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose. The necessity of eye patching for corneal erosions and other surface abnormalities has been questioned lately. We designed an animal model to investigate the use of recurrent applications of artificial tear substitute or silicone oil to enhance corneal reepithelization. Methods. A controlled wound was inflicted to the corneas of two groups of rabbits; one group was treated with tear substitute to the right eye, while the other received silicone oil to the right eye. The left eye served as the control in both groups. The rate of reepithelization was measured at intervals of 6 hours until complete wound closure. The rabbits were sacrificed 48 hours after complete wound closure for histological examination. Results. The wounds of the eyes treated with tear substitute closed at a significantly faster rate than those treated with silicone oil or the untreated eyes. At 48 hours after reepithelization, the tear substitute-treated eyes presented a normal epithelial-structure, while the untreated and silicone oil-treated eyes presented an abnormally structured epithelium. Conclusions. This study demonstrates a favorable effect of tear substitute on corneal reepithelization in an animal model, in terms of both rate of reepithelization and histological aspects of the new epithelium.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S577
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - 15 Feb 1996
Externally publishedYes


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