Review of the tear break-up time and a closer look at the tear break-up time of Hong Kong Chinese

Hie Hua Wong, Brian Brown

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

100 Citations (Scopus)


The technique of assessing tear stability using the fluorescein instillation technique has been widely used in the clinical diagnosis of “dry eye” and in the screening of potential contact lens wearers. Various inconsistencies in the application of the tear break-up time (TBUT) techniques and the results obtained were noted in the literature and this review summarizes the differences and the conclusions of various investigators. The reliability of this technique using two different methods of observation was examined and the mean TBUT of Hong Kong Chinese subjects (HK-Chinese) was determined. We conclude that the TBUT can be measured reliably using either the scanning or full beam method in most patients. The mean TBUT of HK-Chinese is approximately 8 s and about 70% of HK-Chinese have TBUT’s less than 10s.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)30-38
Number of pages9
JournalOptometry and Vision Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1993


  • Chinese eyes
  • Contact lenses
  • Reliability
  • Review
  • TBUT
  • Tear stability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Optometry

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