Pterygium is a growth on the surface of your eye that is initially harmless. As it grows, however, it can irritate your eyes and distort the shape of your eye, resulting in vision problems. Pterygium surgery can be performed for vision effects, irritation, or simply cosmetic reasons.
What Is a Pterygium?
Pterygium (with a silent “p”) is a growth on the conjunctiva (the clear covering over the white part of your eye).
It’s not clear why some people develop them, but they seem to be more likely in people whose eyes are regularly exposed to the sun’s UV radiation. Dusty and dehydrating environments or exposure to chemical irritants can also increase your risk of developing a pterygium.
People often seek pterygium surgery because the pterygium:
- Is causing irritation, redness, or burning
- Is distorting vision
- Is unattractive
Pterygium surgery has several variations. Dr. Vishteh can talk to you about the benefits and drawbacks of pterygium surgery:
- Without graft (bare sclera)
- With graft
The surgery itself typically takes less than half an hour, and is performed using a combination of local anesthesia and light sedation to relieve anxiety. Although recurrence is reduced with today’s techniques, it is the most common risk when electing to have surgery.
Recovery is relatively rapid, but varies among patients. Most people get back to work within a couple days, but depending on the extent of your pterygium, there may be visual effects that last for weeks after surgery. Don’t drive or perform vision-intensive tasks while your vision is recovering.
To learn more about pteryigum surgery, please contact Armin Vishteh, MD today for a free consultation at our offices in: Rancho Cucamonga, Burbank, Santa Monica.