If you spend a lot of time outdoors and have noticed a fleshy growth on the white part of your eye, blame it on the elements. Sun exposure, wind, saltwater and sand are linked to the development of pterygium, a benign lesion that has been described as uncomfortable and unsightly.
In this post, Laser Eye Center introduces you to a patient (name removed for privacy) who was diagnosed and treated for a pterygium.
A Surfer Gets “Surfer’s Eye”
I’ve always loved to surf. My grandfather taught me when I was young, and I try to get out on the water at least 5 or 6 days a week. But my love of surfing has taken a toll on my eyes. You see, a few years ago, I noticed an unusual growth on the white part of my left eye. It started to burn and itch, and my vision even began to change as the growth grew larger.
One day I visited my grandmother, who noticed the growth and told me that my late grandfather experienced something similar. She called it a pterygium (“tuh-rij-ee-um”) and said it was from irritation caused by saltwater, sun and sand. She even called it “surfer’s eye.”
For awhile, I tolerated the vision changes and discomfort. But then I started getting teased by coworkers. I work on a construction crew, and we all kid around with each other. My coworkers started ribbing me about showing up to work drunk or high because my eyes always looked bloodshot.
I tried to brush it off, but one day, my supervisor pulled me aside to ask if I was okay. He told me I looked as if I hadn’t slept in a week. I felt embarrassed as I admitted it was not sleeplessness, but an unusual growth making my eye look bloodshot. Luckily, my boss had a family member that had a pterygium removed at Laser Eye Center. When I got home that evening, I requested a consultation at Laser Eye Center to discuss my case.
The team officially diagnosed my pterygium and explained my options. I could wait and monitor it over time, or I could undergo a procedure to remove it. Laser Eye Center explained how common it is for pterygia to recur and said they use a special graft technique to prevent recurrence.
After careful consideration, I decided to schedule the surgery. I couldn’t risk any more accusations about drinking or doing drugs on the job.
Nobody Remarks on My Appearance Anymore
The day of my surgery went more smoothly than I could have imagined. My eye was completely numbed and I took medication to relax. The care I received from Laser Eye Center was absolutely amazing.
The hardest part of recovery was preventing any water from hitting my healing eye. I had to be very careful when showering and, of course, I couldn’t surf for a few weeks. But the wait was worth it.
My eye no longer looks bloodshot, and nobody comments on my appearance anymore. My eye doesn’t itch or burn. I can see more clearly that I used to. I’m happy I took the plunge and had pterygium removal surgery. I’m even happier that I found Laser Eye Center, because they took great care of me.
Book a Consultation at Laser Eye Center
Don’t let a pterygium interfere with your appearance, comfort or vision any longer. Book a consultation at Laser Eye Center today to discuss your treatment options.
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