Objective: The present study was undertaken to screen rural patients for dry eye disease by a modified Schirmer 1 test without
anaesthesia with a cut off of 10 mm wetting of Schirmer test strip.
Methods: Schirmer 1 test without anaesthesia was performed on 140 patients (65 males and 75 females) over 40 years of age
from rural background after obtaining informed consent and after applying some exclusion criteria. The test was aborted as soon
wetting of 10 mm of Schirmer test strip occurred and time noted. The patients who did not achieve 10 mm of wetting on Schirmer
test over 5 minute’s time were labelled Schirmer test positive.
Results: The incidence of positive Schirmer1 test (without anaesthesia) was 16.4% in the studied group of 140 patients with a
higher incidence in females over 50 years of age. Out of 140 patients screened, 63% patients achieved a wetting of 10 mm of
Schirmer test strip in 2 or less than 2 minutes.
Conclusion: Modified Schirmer 1 test (without anaesthesia) with a cut off limit of 10 mm can be a better option for dry eye disease
screening in large volume based ophthalmic practice and eye camps as it reduces test time and causes less discomfort to
the patient, and the procedure does not require any equipment other than readily available Schirmer test strips.
Schirmer test, Dry eye disease