PTERYGIUM

This is a growth of blood vessels and scar tissue at the junction of the coloured and white part of the eye. It is prevalent in countries with hot, dry and sunny climates i.e. Australia and are the result of ultraviolet light damage.

SYMPTOMS:

  • Irritation
  • Redness
  • Reduced vision

TREATMENT:

Sunsmart:

  1. Wraparound sunglasses or glasses with a broad side. (the UV light from the side leads to the most damage).
  2. Wear a hat
  3. Avoid hottest part of day

Drops:

  1. Lubricants: e.g. Systane, Optive, Refresh
  2. Lubricant + Antihistamine + Vasoconstrictor eg. Naphcon A, Albalon A
  3. Steroids: E.g. FML, Prednefrin Forte, Maxidex Steroids are used sparingly as long term use can lead to cataract and glaucoma.

Surgery:

This is recommended if:

  • The visual axis is threatened
  • Excessive symptoms
  • Unacceptable cosmesis

Process:

  • The blood vessels and scar tissue are removed from the corneal surface
  • Conjunctival autograft – a portion of conjunctiva from the same eye is stitched on to the sclera (white part of the eye) with dissolving sutures. By combining the removal with a conjunctival graft, the chances of recurrence are reduced to less than 10%