Tears: a new way to detect pathologies?


Les larmes : une nouvelle façon de détecter des maladies ?

You might consider your tears as only salty water,but what if they could serve as an indicator of your health status?

It is well known that tears are composed mostly of water and salts, but did you know that they also contain glucose, lipids and urea? Some of these components could serve as biomarkers of diseases, for example, an abnormal concentration of glucose indicates diabetes, and an abnormal amount of certain enzymes might indicate liver disease. Other diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease, cancer, multiple sclerosis and cystic fibrosis could also be detected in this body fluid.

The use of tears has several advantages over blood and urine sampling: it is non-invasive, painless, fast, inexpensive, and can even be collected continuously. Bseides, one of the latest advances published on this subject in 2020 was the creation of smart, wireless contact lenses measuring glucose concentration continuously in the monitoring and treatment of diabetic retinopathy.

Many studies are ongoing to validate the effectiveness of this sampling in the detection of various diseases, but also to provide the appropriate technical means. We could thus be led to make tear analyses as commonly as blood analyses in a few years…