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Pterygium usually starts as a pinguecula—a yellow growth on your eye. It may stay small with mild symptoms, but pterygium can also grow large enough to cover your cornea and impact your vision. In that case, you may need surgery to treat the issue.
Dr. Gelman uses three methods to treat your eyes depending on the severity of the condition and your symptoms. While relatively simple treatments like eyedrops may be effective for minor cases, more developed conditions may require pterygium surgery.
If your eyes are irritated and dry, your eye doctor may prescribe lubricating eye drops. This may also help relieve that foreign body sensation.
If your eye is swollen and red from the pinguecula, you may get a steroid eye drop prescription from your eye doctor. If these eye drops relieve your symptoms, you may not need to have surgery.
However, if you’re facing vision problems and eye health concerns, Dr. Gelman may recommend surgery to remove the pterygium. While there is a chance that it can grow back, our experienced eye surgeons use special techniques to reduce these chances.
Exposure to ultraviolet light, wind, and dust is believed to be the primary cause of these yellowish growths.
It’s never a guarantee that you can avoid pinguecula or pterygium from developing. But you can wear sunglasses to reduce the chances and protect your eyes from ultraviolet (UV) light, wind, and dust.