What Is a Pterygium?
A pterygium is a noncancerous eye growth that develops on the sclera or the white part of the eye. Commonly referred to as an eye web or "surfer's eye," a pterygium may be caused by extended exposure to ultraviolet light, wind, sand, or other irritants. It also may be associated with dry eye syndrome. Pterygia generally begin on the conjunctiva (the clear membrane covering the sclera) within the inner corner of the eye and can expand to cover all or part of the cornea. In some cases, it can change the shape of the cornea, impacting a person's vision. The board-certified ophthalmologists at Rothchild Eye Institute are pleased to offer advanced care for pterygium removal in Delray Beach, FL. Please contact our facility to schedule an appointment or to learn more about pterygium causes and treatments.
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How Are Pterygia Diagnosed and Treated?
Since pterygia have a distinct visual appearance, they are often diagnosed through a physical examination. Our eye physicians may also use a slit lamp to evaluate the growth under light and magnification or perform corneal mapping. Pterygia can be pink, white, or gray in color and may present an aesthetic concern for patients living throughout sunny Palm Beach County. The condition can also result in an array of bothersome symptoms, such as:
- Blurry vision
- A foreign body sensation
In some cases, a pterygium may resolve on its own or can be managed with eye drops. But if it encroaches on your field of vision or causes other concerns (such as astigmatism), pterygium removal may be ideal. Our cornea specialist at Rothchild Eye Institute uses advanced techniques to surgically remove pterygia while preserving surrounding eye structures. Pterygium surgery may also be paired with conjunctival auto-grafting, which transplants tissue taken from the upper eyelid to replenish the conjunctiva structure.
What causes pterygium?
One of the most prevalent causes of pterygium is exposure to a large amount of ultra-violet light. This is why pterygium is more common among individuals who live in sunny areas. Pterygium also typically occurs more often in males over the age of 40 years old.
Can pterygium go away on its own?
In some cases, pterygium can alleviate on its own. However, if it is interfering with your vision, it may require removal at Rothchild Eye Institute. During a thorough consultation at our facility, our skilled eye care professionals can offer the best course of treatment specifically for you.
When should pterygium be treated?
Pterygium should be effectively treated if it is causing vision issues. Additionally, if it is causing redness or irritation, treatment may be necessary. Talk with our team at Rothchild Eye Institute if you are experiencing symptoms of pterygium to discover if treatment may be required.
Protect Your Ocular Health
Though a pterygium is commonly a minor eye condition, it could affect your vision or grow to be a cosmetic concern. Rothchild Eye Institute offers specialized care to diagnose, manage, and treat pterygia and help you maintain ocular health. If you have signs or symptoms of a pterygium, please schedule a consultation with our Delray Beach, FL cornea specialist. Our physicians are providers for Medicare and a wide range of insurance plans.