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Updated by Emma Kalman on Mar 14, 2017
Headline for Surfer's Eye Treatment Rescue
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Emma Kalman Emma Kalman
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Surfer's Eye Treatment Rescue

A surfer’s eye condition sounds as if it is something that surfers might develop. In actual fact, this common condition can affect everyone that spends long periods of time in the outdoor or with outdoor activities.

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Surfer's Eye Treatment Rescue

Surfer's Eye Treatment Rescue

This condition is also known as pterygium, which means fleshy pink tissue growing on your clear tissue lining of the eyelids to cover the eyeball. Ordinarily it can start forming on the area closest to the nose, growing towards your pupil.

Although it’s not cancer, it may appear scary. It can develop and grow slowly up to a specific point and then stop. If it becomes an extreme condition your eye’s pupil will be covered, causing problems with your vision.
Surfer’s eye can either develop in only your one eye or in both, which will then be called a bilateral pterygium. Typically, this condition is not serious, but it might cause an irritation, turn red, or feel as if there is something in your eye. Consequently, you will need medical treatment or even a surgery.

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Signs and symptoms of surfer’s eye

Signs and symptoms of surfer’s eye

There are two stages to this condition and it can include the following:

The beginning stage
The sensation of foreign bodies in your eye.
Inflammation and redness covering the area that is affected.
An itchy or irritable feeling inside your eye.
Your eye can feel dry.
Elevated fleshy white tissues with blood vessels that is prominent on your outer or inner eye’s edges.

Advanced stages
Vision that is blurry white tissues covering your central cornea, and it can cause astigmatism because of pressure on the surface of your cornea.
A white patch that covers your eye’s cornea.

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Causes of Surfer’s Eye

Causes of Surfer’s Eye

The most common causes can include:
Wind and dust irritations
Eyes that is dry
Over exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet light

It will be more common for men between the ages of twenty and forty years and people who live close to the equator to develop this condition.
However, it’s also possible for anyone that lives in a place that is overly sunny, to be affected.

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Treatment of surfer’s eye

Treatment of surfer’s eye

If you experience any of the symptoms, you should contact your eye doctor. He/she will diagnose your condition by using a microscope that is known as a slit lamp. This is used to inspect your eye’s frontal area.
With mild symptoms no treatments will be necessary, but if you experience a temporary irritation or redness, your eye doctor can treat you with:

Steroid prescription eye drops for easing pain, swelling, redness, and itching.
Eye drops to clear up irritation and redness.
Over-the-counter wetting drops or ointments for the eye.

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When is surgery necessary?

When is surgery necessary?

If a growth interferes with your vision or causes discomfort, you eye doctormay remove the growth with a procedure in in the office or at a hospital.

As with any other surgery, complications might arise, such as:
A vision that is blurry because a cornea that is uneven, known as astigmatism.
Cuts or scars to the cornea. The growth might return and can be more aggressive.

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Your eye doctor might only recommend a surgery

Your eye doctor might only recommend a surgery

The appearance of your eye is bothersome. when eyesight can be at risk or when all other types of treatments fail.

Commonly with this surgery your eye doctor will use tissues of the placenta or conjunctiva to fill that empty area when he/she remove the lesion. After the removal of the growth this filler will be stitched or glued onto your area that is affected.

Of course, this procedure may take between thirty and forty-five minutes. It can be necessary to wear a patch over your eye for probably 1 – 2 days. Within only a few days you will be able to go back to your usual activities or work.

You might need to use steroid eye drops over a period of weeks or even months. It can ease your inflammation, as well as prevent other lesions to develop. With these tissues that are grafted into the eye, it will reduce any chance for the growth to return.

After this surgery, you need to take good care of your eye for at least a year, to make sure the growth doesn’t come back. Also be sure to wear proper sunglasses if you go outdoors to protect your eyes.

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Prevention

Prevention

The most important prevention for surfer’s eye to develop or recur will be reducing of environmental assaults on the eyes.

You should wear quality sunglasses outdoors also on days that is cloudy, which will absorb a hundred percent ultraviolet rays like UVB and UVA.

For extra shelter, wear hats with a wide-brim, because UV rays will always be present whether it is sunny or cloudy.

Avoid polluted, windy and dusty environments, and if it’s not possible make sure you have protective eyeglasses on. It will protect your eyes from any irritants that float through the air.
The best protective glasses against wind and sun are your wraparound sunglasses.

You need to always keep your eyes moist and lubricated. For dry eyes you can use artificial tear eye drops to relieve any symptoms.