Pterygium is a growth of fleshy tissue that may start as a pinguecula, a yellow spot or bump on the conjunctiva. It can remain small or grow large enough to cover part of the cornea. When this happens, it can affect your vision. Both pinguecula and pterygium are believed to be caused by a combination of dry eyes and exposure to wind, dust, and ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun.

Symptoms can include redness and swelling of the conjunctiva, a yellow spot or bump on the white of your eye, dry, itchy, burning eyes, foreign body sensation in your eye or blurry vision.

Treatment may include observation, lubricating or steroid eye drops to relieve the inflammation or surgery to remove it. Once the pterygium is removed, your surgeon may transplant a thin piece of normal tissue onto the affected area or apply a medication to prevent a recurrence. These techniques helps reduce the chance that your pterygium will grow back. The best way to keep a pterygium from coming back is to avoid dryness, sunlight and dust.