The pterygium is a connective tissue thickening that originates from the conjunctiva. In the form of a triangle, it then grows slowly from the edge of the cornea toward its center. The expansion of the pinna is accompanied by a curvature of the corneal surface (astigmatism). Gradually, the visual acuity and the mobility of the eyeball deteriorate.
The only therapeutic option is surgical removal of the pinna. It should be done when there is a tendency of growth of the wing fur. In the past, it was common to only excise the wing skin and cover the tissue defect by moving and suturing adjacent conjunctiva. Subsequently, however, it was quite common for the wing fur to reappear in the same place (recurrence).
In the Herzog Carl Theodor Eye Clinic, the modern technique of pterygium surgery is preferred: first, the wing skin is surgically removed. The resulting tissue defect is closed by sewing on a so-called free conjunctival graft. The free conjunctival graft is taken from the same eye under the upper lid. The removal of the graft in this area of the eye does not cause any functional or cosmetic impairment. With this complex surgical technique, even larger wing skins and those that have recurred after unsuccessful initial surgery can be removed very successfully and, above all, permanently.