AUTOLOGOUS SERUM EYE DROPS
Patients suffering with severe dry eyes may not produce enough tears and supplementing natural tear production with artificial tears or lubricants is often inadequate. Many people have underlying medical issues which cause or worsen dry eye, including Sjogrens syndrome, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and thyroid disease. Others take medications which diminish tear production. Serum tears can be used to help corneal ulcers heal as well as other ocular surface disorders.
The meaning of autologous is that the donor and the recipient are the same person. The eye drops in this case are made from your own blood. Red blood cells and clotting factors are removed, leaving behind serum. This is diluted with a sterile, preservative-free solution to produce a tear substitute that is unique to the patient, and contains many important growth factors and nutrients normally found in healthy tears. Since blood and tears have an almost identical salinity and pH, there is no issue of burning or stinging upon usage.
HOW THIS PROCESS WORKS
If you are from out of town and want to wait for us to make your serum on the same day, you need to make an appointment with us and you need to be at the lab as early as possible.
There are 2 steps in the process of obtaining your autologous serum tears:
- Have your blood drawn to obtain your serum: We recommend having your blood drawn at Any Lab Test Now (105 W NC Hwy 54, Suite 245 Durham, NC 27713 919-321-4355). After your blood is drawn, they will contact us to pick up your serum. There is a fee for your blood draw so check with the lab.
- Pharmacy compounds your eye drops from your serum: We compound serum in concentrations of 20%-100%. We typically dispense 30 x 2ml bottles. This can be up to a 90-day supply. Because they are non-preserved, the drops are stored in the freezer until you need them. An average prescription costs ~$200. [This is subject to change so call for the current price.]
Please call our team if you have any questions! We are happy to answer them.