Pterygium Surgery

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Pterygium surgery is usually performed to either improve comfort, cosmetic appearance or vision. Modern techniques are very successful in achieving each of these aims and it is usually better to operate earlier rather than later.

Successful pterygium surgery involves complete removal of all of the abnormal tissue and replacement with normal conjunctiva from another part of the eye.

Dr. Athanasiov uses a technique that is similar to the patented technique of Professor Lawrence Hirst which has the lowest rate of recurrence and arguably the best chance of an excellent cosmetic outcome.

This surgery takes around 45 minutes to an hour and it is performed under local anaesthetic (usually with sedation to improve comfort).

Surgery has a relatively long recovery: 1 - 2 weeks of pain/irritation followed by another 4 - 6 weeks of persistent redness at the surgical site (therafter the conjunctiva can be expected to appear white as if the pterygium was never present). Double vision is common for the first week. A mildly droopy eyelid (ptosis) can also occur but this rarely requires surgical correction. It is best to plan for at least 1 week off work.

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