October 17, 2010

Survival Guide- Pterygium

Pterygium is:
a) gravitational force field
b) eye disease
c) floral pattern

Wikipedia tells is as it is:
Pterygium most often refers to a benign growth of the conjunctiva. A pterygium commonly grows from the nasal side of the sclera. It is associated with, and thought to be caused by ultraviolet-light exposure (e.g. sunlight), low humidity, and dust."

Pterygium is sort of eye disease- I wonder how common it really is, because I had never heard of it until I found one in my eye. It was a filmlike worthless growth, not painful at all, but caused irritation and became bright red telling the truth about my sleepless nights. Tiredness, wind and sun seemed to make it worse. At first I thought it's like cling film, something that could be used in kitchen to cover the leftovers and pop the container in the fridge. So I tried to scratch it off, but of course nothing happened- sloppy performance. It was there to remain and nothing except from a sharp knife or another kind of instrument would remove it.

I had my procedure done as day surgery, hospital in the morning, home in the evening, which suited me very well and I recovered from general anesthesia (bless those mind-altering substances!) by the time day surgery ward closed. I was asleep throughout the whole thing, just did not feel comfortable hearing and "feeling" things happening around me, so sleep sleep sleep was the way to go for me. Local anesthesia works well, that I can say from experience, having had eye pressure checked numerous times prior (and as an afterthought, after surgery too) to surgery. But just the thought of someone poking my eye with sharpest tool in the box.. It was a NO.
After surgery I was little nauseated, no pain at all.

The first week wasn't the most comfortable week in my life, but not the worst either. During the worst moments, Brufen/Panadol took care of the discomfort, I would not even go as far as saying it was pain. Just discomfort. Eye drops and ointment caused more headache so to speak, it was kind of a challenge to get the ointment to go where it was supposed to go: not on the top of the eyelid or on upper part of cheek. Into the eye, somehow.
Eye is still red, but white part of the eye is getting back into its normal "white" condition- no pain at all, eye drops daily x4. Eye opens well, eyesight may have improved, but I am not sure about that just yet. I don't even know if pterygium affected eyesight, how far it had really grown. Well of course the doctor explained all this, but I could only absorb so much information- the part that I considered important at the time.

The thought of having something "alien" in my eye was strange and almost as soon as pterygium appeared and I found out what it was, I knew it had no place in MY eye, and out it comes, sooner or later. Latest vision check-up shows perfect vision in the right, and 25/20 vision on the left, this is pretty good I think.
Good result, as good as it can get. Doc said that he removed it all, it was pterygium, nothing malignant, and that message meant the world to me. It was not a painful separation.
Definitely an eye opener- pun intended.

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