Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Pterygium Overview

What is a pterygium?
A person with a pterygium has a web-like thickening of the thin membrane that covers the white part of the eye, called the conjunctiva. The thickening occurs in the part of the conjunctiva nearest to the nose. A pterygium may be white or yellow. A pterygium may spread across the cornea, interfering with vision. The cause for pterygium is unknown.

What are the symptoms of a pterygium?
Symptoms that may occur with a pterygium include eye redness, itching, or tearing. Rarely, a person with a pterygium may experience blurry vision.

How does the doctor treat a pterygium?
Treatment for pterygium may include moisturizing eye drops, lubricating eye ointment, corticosteroid eye drops, or surgery to remove the pterygium.

Continue to Pterygium Risk Factors

Last Updated: Jul 31, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Pterygium References
  1. Chan CM, Liu YP, Tan DT. Ocular surface changes in pterygium. Cornea. 2002 Jan;21(1):38-42. [11805505]
  2. Hirst LW. The treatment of pterygium. Surv Ophthalmol. 2003 Mar-Apr;48(2):145-80. [12686302]
  3. Pham TQ, Wang JJ, Rochtchina E, Mitchell P. Pterygium, pinguecula, and 5-year incidence of cataract. Am J Ophthalmol. 2005 Jun;139(6):1126-8. [15953456]
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