Review and analysis of grading scales for ocular surface staining

TitleReview and analysis of grading scales for ocular surface staining
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsBegley, C., B. Caffery, R. Chalmers, P. Situ, T. Simpson, and J. D. Nelson
JournalOcular Surface
KeywordsConjunctiva, Cornea, Eye, Fluorescein, Grade, Lissamine green, Rose bengal, Scale, Stain

Vital dye staining has been used for over a century to assess the severity of ocular surface disease. However, despite common usage, a universally accepted “gold standard” grading scale does not exist for corneal and conjunctival staining, which can impact the ability to diagnose and monitor ocular surface conditions such as dry eye. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other international regulatory agencies rely on ocular surface staining as a primary endpoint for new drug approvals, so that absence of a “gold standard” scale may affect approval of new drug treatments. To begin to address this problem, we review existing, published grading scales in an integrated fashion, highlighting their differences and similarities to emphasize common themes and the methods and elements that are important in creating a standardized scale. Our goal is to aid the field in moving towards an accepted standardized grading scale for ocular surface staining that can be applied in clinic and research settings for a variety of ocular conditions. © 2019 The Authors