New Dry Eye Medication Approved By FDA

The chance of experiencing dry eye disease rises with age, affecting approximately 5 percent of the adult population age 30-40 and 10-15 percent of adults older than age 65; it is more common among women.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on July 11 approved Xiidra, an ophthalmic solution, for treating symptoms of dry eye disease, saying it is the first medication in a new class of drugs called lymphocyte function-associated antigen 1 (LFA-1) antagonists approved by FDA for dry eye disease.

"Normal tear production is needed for clear vision and eye health," explained Dr. Edward Cox, M.D., director of the Office of Antimicrobial Products in FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. The disease includes a group of conditions where the eye does not produce an adequate volume of tears or the tears are not of the correct consistency. The chance of experiencing dry eye disease rises with age, affecting approximately 5 percent of the adult population age 30-40 and 10-15 percent of adults older than age 65; it is more common among women.

Xiidra is manufactured by Shire US Inc., of Lexington, Mass. The solution's safety and efficacy were assessed in more than 1,000 patients in four separate randomized, controlled studies. The studies found that groups treated with Xiidra demonstrated more improvement in both the signs and the symptoms of eye dryness than the groups treated with a placebo.

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