In mid 2012 we learned that a company called Tissue Tech was going to trial single use T4O wipes as a treatment for ocular demodex mites.
Early last year Bio-Tissue Inc., the parent company of Tissue Tech announced the release of Cliradex. This new product is promoted as a tea tree oil based moist towelette used for “eye conditions such as blepharitis, ocular rosacea, dry eye, conjuctivitis and other eye disorders”.
Bio Tissue have championed the use of 4-Terpeneol, an active in Tea Tree Oil – also known as Melaleuca alternifolia.
What is Cliradex?
Cliradex is a moist towlette cleanser that contains an extract from tea tree oil. You wipe your closed eye lids and let them dry for 1 minute.
The extract, Terpinen-4-ol (T4O) is the most abundant of the 100 components of Tea Tree Oil, typically comprising 30%. In fact the international standard for Tea Tree Oil, ISO 4730 stipulates that TTO should contain between 30% and 48% of terpinen-4-ol.
The makers of Cliradex tell us that terpinen-4-ol is less irritating than tea tree oil.
Is Cliradex FDA Approved?
No Cliradex has not been approved as a treatment for any condition.
You can read the guarded terminology typical of treatments that are not officially FDA approved but are still promoted for particular conditions at the Cliradex web site – http://www.cliradex.com
You will see Cliradex described as a “lash, eyelid and facial cleanser” – whereas the clinical trial in 2012 clearly targeted the towlettes as being able to kill demodex mites living in the eyelid.
If you do try Cliradex be sure to remember that just because the main active ingredient is touted as being organic, it may still be intensely irritating and cause you unintended side effects.
The Cliradex web site somewhat cutely and proudly tells us that their product is preservative free, when we know it contains T4O, an active extract from a noxious oil. It seems clear that Cliradex doesn’t need a extra preservative.
Dr. Scheffer C.G. Tseng, the director of R&D at TissueTech is in the inventor and patent holder for Cliradex, and has recevied NIH funding to determine the important active ingredient in Tea Tree Oil.
For more information on recent thoughts on managing Blepharitis see;
Clinical Update: Cornea, July 2012
Managing Blepharitis: Tried-and-True and New Approaches
By Annie Stuart, Contributing Writer
Interviewing J. Daniel Nelson, MD, Henry D. Perry, MD, and Scheffer C. G. Tseng, MD, PhD
Mighty Mites ?
Tea tree oil. With both antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory effects, tea tree oil has been effective at eradicating mites, said Dr. Tseng, in either 50 percent lid scrubs or 5 percent lid massages.
Because higher concentrations can be irritating, however, his team (with research supported by the National Eye Institute) worked to identify the active ingredient in tea tree oil for killing mites.
They have developed a treatment containing this ingredient, which is better tolerated by patients. Dr. Tseng said, “This new lid scrub regimen, known as Cliradex, will be available this year.”
Where to buy Cliradex
Cliradex appears to be available at DirectDermacare and via some eyecare practitioners. A box of 24 wipes costs $43.
Cliradex also appears to be available at Amazon – Cliradex Lash, Eyelid and Facial Cleanser.