Pterygium surgery is a medical procedure carried out to remove pterygia (noncancerous conjunctival growths) from your eyes. Your conjunctiva is the clear tissue that covers the white part of your eyes. This cover extends to the inside of your eyelids. Severe growth of the pterygium can block your cornea or interfere with your eyesight.
However, pterygium surgery can remove the growth and extension of this white tissue. This minimally invasive surgical procedure lasts between 30 and 45 minutes. Your doctor will walk you through what to expect before your pterygium surgery.
During the surgery, you will be sedated to prevent discomfort around your eyes. The surgeon will remove the noncancerous conjunctival growth, including other associated tissues, from around your cornea. Your surgeon will replace the removed pterygium with a graft to stop pterygium from growing again after surgery.
Once the surgery is complete, it's important that you follow your doctor's instructions to prevent infection and ensure proper healing. Below you'll find information on what to expect after surgery and the steps you can take to ease the recovery process.
What to Expect After Pterygium Surgery
It's common for pterygium surgery to cause some irritation, swelling, and redness right after the procedure. Additionally, your eyesight may not be as sharp or clear as usual. However, with proper aftercare and follow-ups with your doctor, your symptoms should fade and your eyes should heal completely. If your vision doesn't clear after several weeks, or you develop symptoms of an infection, please contact your doctor immediately.
Simple After Care Steps
Caring for your eyes after pterygium surgery can seem intimidating, but it doesn't have to be. Some steps you can take to lessen side effects and make your recovery proceed as quickly as possible include:
Take Prescribed Medicines
The following medicines may help suppress symptoms that appear after surgery:
- Lubricating eye drops: Play a critical role in moistening and soothing your eyes.
- Steroidal eye drops: Reduce swelling and irritation around the eye.
Make sure to take any medicine as prescribed by your physician. Contact your healthcare provider if you experience additional side effects.
Easy Next Steps
After undergoing a successful pterygium surgery, follow these steps as you recover:
- Do not drive until your healthcare provider approves
- Do not rub or press your eyes for at least three months
- You may take a bath or shower following your surgery, but you must keep soap and water out of your eyes for at least three weeks
- Do not apply eye makeup for two weeks
- Always cover your eyes using eye shields while sleeping
- Refrain from returning to your exercise routine for at least three weeks
- Wash your hands before touching around your eyes
- Do not play contact sports or swim for a month
It's important you take these general guidelines seriously and follow any other directions provided by your doctor to help prevent complications.
Consider Preventive Measures
If you're concerned about developing a pterygium, there are some preventive measures you can take to help prevent one from forming. Use high-quality ultraviolet (UV) protectant sunglasses to shield your eyes from wind, direct sunlight, and dust. Additionally, wear a wide-brimmed hat designed to shield your face and eyes from the sunlight. If you believe you are beginning to form a pterygium, make sure to contact your healthcare provider as soon as possible.
Receive Exceptional Pterygium Care
At Global LASIK & Cataract Institute Ontario, we know how important your vision is to your overall well-being. We have a team of highly experienced doctors and surgeons who are dedicated to providing you with exceptional eye care. If you experience vision difficulties or believe you have developed a pterygium, contact Global LASIK & Cataract Institute in Ontario today and get the relief you're looking for.