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Australia .. sun, surf and Pterygium

We are a sun loving nation but unfortunately it comes with consequences. One is something called a pterygium- that's the wing-shaped red fleshy growth where the white meets the coloured part of the eye. You see pterygia on surfers, outdoor workers and people that work on the water- people that get a lot of sun exposure. A pterygium at best is unsightly and at worst can cross your pupil and make you lose your eyesight.

You should have your pterygium examined and monitored by an optometrist or ophthalmologist on a regular basis every 6-12 months to check for growth. Ideally a ptrerygium should be removed before it reaches the pupil. You may also choose to have it removed if it is causing astigmatism (change in focus of your eye) or if it is always red and irritating.

Regular artificial tears can help with the redness and irritation and potentially slow down growth of the pterygium. Sometimes a mild steroid drop for a short duration can help calm the redness.

Of course prevention is always the best so as the the Anti Cancer Council recommends " Slip Slop Slap Seek and Slide"

* Information on this blog is general in nature and should not be taken as professional medical advice or as a substitute for a consultation with a medical professional.

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