Monday, June 20, 2011
This 45 year old man came to his doctor about a triangular shape growth in the inside corner of both eyes. It had been present for a long time but seemed to be increasing. There was no pain, no discharge and no visual problem. The internal eye exam was normal. What is the diagnosis?
These common conjunctival growths are called a pterygium (pronounced "teryjium"). We don't know what causes them but there are theories that UV light exposure is associated and working outside. They are more common in men and people living closer to the equator. Dust and wind may also play a role along with predisposing genetic factors also.
Sunglasses and hats may protect from pterygium. The growths do not affect vision unless they extend close to the pupil. They can be surgically removed if they extend into the visual field but usually they are just a cosmetic nuisance.
(Photo compliments of Consultantlive)
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