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Pterygium Surgery

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Old 02-21-2008, 03:38 AM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 33
kerry32 HB User
Pterygium Surgery

Hi everybody out there,
My name is Kerry and I am from Australia. I had pterygium (pinguecula) surgery at Harvard Eye Institute in California in June 2006.

It may sound extreme to anybody that I would travel all the way to America from Australia to have this surgery, but I can honestly say at the time, my life was depending on it.

I think anybody who has suffered from pterygium can totally understand where I am coming from. Before I had the surgery, I was living behind sunglasses, so embarrassed about the redness in my eyes. I had many people ask why my eyes were so red, and some even asked if I was on drugs? I was addicted to eye drops to clear the redness, and my emotional well-being was crushed.

Well, it is now 2008 - and even though the post surgery healing took forever (approx. 4 months), today, it was probably the best thing that I ever did.

To all you people out there, contemplating about this. Please stop thinking about it and do yourself a favour.

If you would like to ask any questions, I would be happy to answer them.



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Old 02-25-2008, 03:15 PM   #2
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Southern California
Posts: 1
iceomatic HB User
Re: Pterygium Surgery

Hi Kerry!

I also had pterygium surgery at Harvard Eye. I am SO happy I had it done! My pterygium was large and covered a good part of my cornea. It is so nice to not get asked, "what is on your eye?" My contacts fit better and I don't have the constant irritated feeling.

I'm so glad you had a good experience too. I agree that it takes a long time to heal.

Old 04-02-2008, 06:19 PM   #3
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: usa
Posts: 2
pacificocean06 HB User
Re: Pterygium Surgery

Hi Kerry, I had some questions about the surgery. What did your eyes look like during the 4 months of healing after the surgery? Did they use the autograph or amniotic graft? I am looking into Harvard Eye Associates and want to prepare for a long recovery. I only have pinguecula, but it is HORRIBLE because my right eye is BRIGHT red and just hideous. Nothing else has worked.

Old 04-11-2008, 09:45 PM   #4
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 1
stynkitofu HB User
Re: Pterygium Surgery

Hi Kerry! I was doing some research about pinguecula removal and was reading through your thread from back in 2006. I decided to join the forum to see if I could find others suffering from pings. I am so pleased you are still here. It has almost been two years since your surgery. How are your eyes now?

I am 24 years old and have been living with pinguela and EXTREMELY bloodshot eyes that never go away for the past 3 years. I have three in total, one of which grew from the size of a grain of sand to the size of a I work with children; both parents and children are always wary when they meet me. I go out with my friends and they used to always ask why my eyes were red; they've completely stopped asking now cos my eyes are never "white". I've never been able to look people in the eye anymore because of what they'll ask or say.

I've been to three doctors who have all told me the same thing: "oh its nothing serious. there's nothing to worry about." These doctors never even told me the name of the condition until I googled "yellow spots in eyes". Actually, the doctors never really paid attention to my concerns. They told me pinguela is oh so very common and that it hardly requires any medical (let alone surgical) attention. They just never knew how many nights I've cried over this. I've never met anyone with pinguecula before; my friends don't understand as they say I'm over exaggerating my situation.

I'd really really really like to have mine remove. It always feels like there are foreign bodies in my eyes, and the bloodshot appearance is awful. The inflamed veins are painful and often fatigues my eye. Will the Harvard Institute remove pinguecula (cos I see on their website it is "pterygium" surgery)? I just feel so depressed and stressed all the time. I'm only 24 and I already scare off guys and the children that I work with. There must be something I can do, right?

Thanks for "listening". I just needed to get this out cos no one understands me, so I hope someone here in this forum can.

Regards, Dominique

Old 04-15-2008, 12:57 PM   #5
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: usa
Posts: 2
pacificocean06 HB User
Re: Pterygium Surgery

Hi I looked into Pterygium surgery at the Harvard Eye Clinic and they said they do remove Pingueculas. If you don't have insurance, it cost 3k per eye. I am considering this surgery as well, but am nervous about the healing process. You can email or call them. Their contact is on the website.

Old 04-20-2008, 08:40 PM   #6
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1
rhiannonbunny HB User
Re: Pterygium Surgery

Hi Dominique,

I just wanted to write to let you know that I understand how you feel! I also have a pterygium (although it might be a pinguecula...not 100% sure!). I am 29 and have had it since I was around 23. It just appeared one day. I've seen two doctors and they have both minimized it. They say it's not a big deal, but I'm sure they wouldn't want to live with it. I am finally seriously looking in to having it removed, possibly by the Gulani Vision Institute in Jacksonville, Florida.

I also work with children...none of my kids have ever commented on it, but colleagues do all of the time. It makes me so self-conscious. Most of the time people say, oh your eye's all red, do you have allergies? I usually just say yes, even though I've never had allergies in my life!

My advice is to just hang in there and find a doctor who takes this condition seriously. I've read articles from other sufferers saying 'we can put a man on the moon, do open heart surgery, but we can't treat this?' We definitely can, it's just a matter of finding the right doctor. If I were you, I'd start my search now...I wish I had done this sooner!

Good luck with everything,

Last edited by moderator2; 04-21-2008 at 06:00 AM. Reason: the huge quote!

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