TearLab Wins Silver Medical Design Excellence Award

TearLab Corporation of San Diego announced that its TearLab Osmolarity System has received a Silver 2009 Medical Design Excellence Award (MDEA). MDEA is the premier awards program for the medical technology community, recognizing top innovations in medical device manufacturing. Winners received their awards at a ceremony held yesterday during the Medical Design and Manufacturing East conference in New York City.

The TearLab Osmolarity System is a novel lab-on-a-chip that measures tear film osmolarity, a quantitative and objective biomarker of ocular physiology that is highly predictive for Dry Eye Disease (DED). The TearLab Osmolarity System is non-invasive, requires a small tear sample (less than 50 nanoliters), and takes less than two minutes from sample to result. TearLab Osmolarity is a global marker of disease. Regardless of the underlying disease pathophysiology, heightened osmolarity in conjunction with other methods of clinical evaluation will  indicate DED. 

Dry Eye Disease is a condition of gradual onset and progression. It is a multifactorial disease that results in symptoms of discomfort, visual disturbance and tear film instability with potential damage to the ocular surface. Symptoms include persistent dryness, scratching,and burning. Some people experience a “foreign body sensation,” the feeling that something is in the eye.

Recent news on the diagnosis of DED for David Ortiz, a player for the Boston Red Sox, has brought renewed public interest in DED. Largely thought to be a woman’s disease, DED also affects a large number of men. According to a recent publication in the Archives of Ophthalmology June 2009 issue, DED affects over 3 million women and over 1.5 million men in the 50-plus age group.

Author Debra Schaumberg’s article also states that Dry Eye is one of the most prevalent eye diseases and reasons for seeking eye care among older people. TearLab was recently cleared by the FDA to aid in the diagnosis of patients with suspected DED, giving physicians a valuable tool for managing their Dry Eye patients. 

Related post: TearLab Gets FDA 510(k) Approval

Related video: TearLab animation

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