NICE has developed a medtech innovation briefing (MIB) on LipiFlow thermal pulsation treatment for dry eyes caused by blocked meibomian glands.

The LipiFlow system applies heat and gentle pressure to the eyelids to treat dry eyes caused by meibomian gland dysfunction. Two randomised controlled trials showed that the LipiFlow system was at least as effective as warm compresses and reported some improved patient-reported outcomes. The LipiFlow system costs £35,500 with additional costs for consumables and software upgrades.

Their purpose is to provide objective information on device and diagnostic technologies to aid local decision-making by clinicians, managers and procurement professionals. By making this information available, NICE helps to avoid the need for NHS organisations to produce similar information for local use.

Medtech innovation briefings are not NICE guidance. They differ in format, contain no judgement on the value of the technology and do not constitute a guidance recommendation.

MIBs are commissioned by NHS England and produced in support of the NHS 5 Year Forward View, specifically as one of a number of steps which will accelerate innovation in new treatments and diagnostics.