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The objective sign of disease of the tear passages, viz: the overflow of tears, varies in degree in different patients. From the history and by the personal examination, it can be learned that while the eyes of some patients water continuously as long as they are awake, others notice the watering only when exposed to wind, smoke or dust, or on using their eyes under the condition of eye strain. In this class of patients the tears accumulate only while some stimulus excites the tear gland; but in the first mentioned class the activity of the tear gland is a continuous one. As far as we know, the secretion of the lachrymal gland is, however, not a continuous one under normal circumstances. Thus it has been noticed in congenital, absolute impermeability of the tear passage and after surgical obliteration of the tear sac, that the tears appear only when some
GRADLE H. COMMENTARIES ON DISEASES OF THE LACHRYMAL PASSAGES.Read in the Section on Ophthalmology, at the Forty-fourth Annual Meeting of the American Medical Association. JAMA. 1893;XXI(18):636–637. doi:10.1001/jama.1893.02420700004001b
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