updated 5/17/2011 7:46:08 AM ET 2011-05-17T11:46:08

SAN DIEGO, May 17, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- TearLab Corporation (Nasdaq:TEAR) (TSX:TLB) ("TearLab" or the "Company") announced today a unique new Individuelle Gesundheitsleistungen ("individual health benefits"), or IGel, code that applies to the TearLab® Osmolarity test in Germany. The new code is effective immediately.

The new IGel code for the TearLab Osmolarity test is A1234; Collection and analysis of TearFilm. IGel is the self-pay coding system that enables reimbursement for insured individuals. The IGel system runs parallel to the state funding system and allows practitioners greater flexibility in billing for their services. IGel procedures are offered to and paid for individually by the patient, who is then reimbursed by their private insurance coverage.

The payment rate applied to the TearLab Osomolarity test has been established at 23,20 Euros per eye, including material costs. 

bon Optic, the Company's exclusive distributor in Germany, managed the application and approval process in conjunction with TearLab and local clinicians.

Mrs. Louise Meiners, International Sales Director of bon Optic, commented, "The TearLab test is already established in Germany and is recognized by leading clinics and practitioners to be a valuable additional tool in the diagnosis and management of Dry Eye. The confirmation that it can now be billed under the IGel coding system is expected to help move the TearLab test into mainstream ophthalmic practice here."

Elias Vamvakas, TearLab's Chief Executive Officer, said, "With reimbursement established in the U.S. at the beginning of this year, we are very pleased to see other countries are also now recognizing the uniqueness, utility and value of our patented lab-on-a-chip technology. We are especially excited about Germany as it is the third largest medical device market in the world."

About The TearLab Osmolarity System

The TearLab Osmolarity System uses a novel lab-on-a-chip approach that requires less than 50 nL (nanoliters) of tear fluid in order to measure tear Osmolarity. The TearLab Osmolarity System eliminates the challenges that previously prevented point-of-care Osmolarity testing. The TearLab Osmolarity System can produce a sample-to-answer result in less than 30 seconds.

About Dry Eye Disease

DED is a common condition in which the eye does not produce enough tears to keep the surface of the eye sufficiently lubricated. It affects approximately 40 million people in the U.S. and 100 million people worldwide. In its mild to moderate forms, it can impact vision and the ability to go about daily activities. In its more severe forms, DED can lead to permanent loss of vision.

About bon Optic

bon Optic, established in 1982, is a leading manufacturer of high end diagnostic instruments and furniture. With a sales force of six and a technical team of eight, bon Optic has nationwide sales and service coverage in Germany and is active in ophthalmology and optician segments. Excellent quality and innovation are the key markers that bon  Optic seeks to integrate into its programs.

About TearLab Corporation

TearLab Corporation ( www.tearlab.com ) develops and markets lab-on-a-chip technologies that enable eye care practitioners to improve standard of care by objectively and quantitatively testing for disease markers in tears at the point-of-care. The TearLab Osmolarity Test, for diagnosing Dry Eye Disease, is the first assay developed for the award-winning TearLab Osmolarity System. Headquartered in San Diego, CA, TearLab Corporation's common shares trade on the NASDAQ Capital Market under the symbol 'TEAR' and on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol 'TLB'.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release may contain forward-looking statements. These statements relate to future events and are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions about the Company. These statements are only predictions based on our current expectations and projections about future events. You should not place undue reliance on these statements. Actual events or results may differ materially. Many factors may cause our actual results to differ materially from any forward-looking statement, including the factors detailed in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission and Canadian securities regulatory authorities, including but not limited to our Forms 10-K and 10-Q. We do not undertake to update any forward-looking statements.

CONTACT: Investors
         Stephen Kilmer, President
         Kilmer Lucas Inc.
         (905) 690-2400 Ext. 21
         stephen@kilmerlucas.com
         
         Media
         Leonard Zehr, Managing Director
         Kilmer Lucas Inc.
         (905) 690-2400 Ext. 41
         len@kilmerlucas.com

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