A pterygium is a pinkish, triangular-shaped tissue growth on the cornea. Pterygium starts as an area of redness and thickening of the conjunctiva, usually on the inner aspect of the white of the eye. In some cases, the pterygium may extend across onto the cornea, which is the clear front window of the eye. Surgical removal is the only definitive treatment available. Surgery is required for:

  • A cosmetic reason as the tissue growth on the cornea is a cause of cosmetic embarrassment.
  • When the tissue grows enough on cornea to interfere with the vision either by distorting the cornea or by extending over the pupil.
  • When the mass interferes with the movement of eye.

Pterygium usually has no symptoms, however some pterygium become red and inflamed from time to time and eye often become sore, red, and gritty, especially with wind, smoke or dust.

Pterygia are more common in sunny climates and in the 20-40 age group. Scientists do not know what causes pterygia to develop. However, since people who have pterygia usually have spent a significant time outdoors, many doctors believe ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun may e a factor. In areas where sunlight is strong, wearing protective eyeglasses, sunglasses, and/or hats with brims is suggested. While some studies report a higher prevalence of pterygia in men than in women, this may reflect different rates of exposure to UV light.
Pterygium surgery comprises of dissecting the mass from the cornea and the excess conjunctival tissue is excised in toto. Because of the high recurrence rate of pterygia there have been few advances in pterygium surgery to reduce recurrence rate. They are application of mitomycin over the bare sclera, transplanting amniotic membrane and limbal stem cell autologous transplantation. Studies have proved that the most successful option is to do an autologous transplantation. In this procedure the limbal stem cells from the same eye or in rare cases from the other eye is taken and transplanted on the sclera from where the pterygium is excised. The graft is secured either by self absorbing sutures or tissue glue, making it a No Stitch Surgery.

We at our centre have facility for all above mentioned options.