Cortisol and the tear film: the relationship between stress, adrenal disease and tear cortisol levels
Wynne, Brittany Marie
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The endocrine system and the lacrimal functional unit are linked in ways that are not currently well understood. The included study investigated concentrations of the endogenous glucocorticoid cortisol in the healthy canine tear film at rest and after intravenous stimulation with adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH). Endogenous cortisol was detected in the canine tear film at rest and was found to increase significantly in concert with serum cortisol levels following simulated stress via ACTH administration. The presence of elevated endogenous cortisol levels in the tear film has the potential to adversely affect the outcome of ophthalmic disease. A proposed study would investigate endogenous cortisol concentrations in horses with naturally occurring fungal keratitis.