Pentascore Pilot Study Validates Use of Tool to Assess QoL in Dry Eye Disease

The combination of 5 visual analogue scales offers accurate assessment of dry eye disease burden.

Results of a pilot study suggest that the Pentascore — a combination of 5 visual analogue scales — can quickly and effectively assess the burden of dry eye disease and patient satisfaction with treatment, according to research published in the British Journal of Ophthalmology. 

The pilot study compared Pentascore efficacy to that of the ocular surface disease index (OSDI). The Pentascore assesses patient quality-of-life spanning the previous 7 days with regards to ocular pain or discomfort intensity, pain or discomfort frequency, impact of problem on daily activities, impact of the problem on visual tasks, and the efficacy and tolerability of ongoing treatments. 

A total of 161 patients (mean age, 54.6 ± 1.3 years; 132 female) were included in the study sample. Mean algebraic result of the Pentascore was 52.6; mean standardized area was 32.1. No statistically significant difference between sexes were noted for either mean or area (P <.05 for all). Comparatively, OSDI mean result was 52.6, with no statistically significant difference between sexes (P <.05 for all comparisons). 

Overall correlation between Pentascore and OSDI was high, regardless of calculation method. Using both algebraic mean values and SRAP, R was 0.74 (P =.001) for both. 

When comparing each visual analogue scale between Pentascore and OSDI results, each visual analogue scale was statistically significantly correlated to total OSDI, with the highest correlation for the third scale — the impact of the ocular condition on daily activities (R=0.69). The lowest, but still statistically significant, correlation was the fifth scale, measuring the efficacy and tolerability of dry eye disease treatment. 

Globally, a trend toward correlation between the area of the Pentascore radar graph and corneal fluorescein staining was noted (P =.09). 

Study limitations include the retrospective nature of the analysis and the small number of objective clinical signs that were analyzed. The study does not provide data on the use of a Pentascore alternative in patients who are not currently in ongoing treatment. 

“This initial study suggests that the Pentascore could be used for the assessment of patients presenting with [dry eye disease],” the research concludes. “The Pentascore seems to be a quick and efficient tool for assessing dry eye disease in routine clinical practice due to its rapid and easy implementation.”  

Disclosure: Several study authors declared affiliations with the pharmaceutical industry. Please see the original reference for a full list of authors’ disclosures. 


Labetoulle M, Benichou J, M’nafek N, et al. Assessment of patient burden from dry eye disease using a combination of five visual analogue scales and a radar graph: A pilot study of the PENTASCORE. Published online December 16, 2020. Br J Ophthalmol. doi:10.1136/bjophthalmol-2020-317473