Dry eye syndrome is a common disorder caused by problems with the tear film that lubricates the eye.
Researchers at Schepens Eye Research Institute found that people with a particular level of tear production are more likely to develop the syndrome after Lasik eye surgery, which can be performed to correct near- and far-sightedness.
They evaluated 24 patients who were about to undergo eye surgery, measuring the amount of tears produced by each eye prior to surgery using the Schirmer test, which involves a piece of paper placed on the corneal surface.
Analysis revealed that patients whose eyes produced less than 20mm of wetting of a Schirmer strip in five minutes were more likely to develop long-term dry eye syndrome.
"These findings should help ophthalmologists determine if pre-treatment is necessary before surgery or if surgery is appropriate at all for an individual," said Dr Darlene Dartt, director of Schepens Eye Research Institute's Military Vision Research Programme.