A pinguecula is a yellowish thin tissue that grows like a bump on the surface of the eye near the cornea, most commonly on the side closest to the nose.
The exact cause is not well understood. Long-term exposure to sunlight and chronic eye irritation from dry, dusty conditions seem to play an important role.
Pinguecula occurs more often in people who spend a great deal of time outdoors. Farmers, fishermen, people living near the equator or tropical climates are often more affected. Individuals who engage in outdoor activities such as golfing, surfing, gardening and skiing are also at greater risk. Welding is also a major job related risk.
If you have a Pinguecula you may have minimal or no symptoms at all. However, your Pinguecula may get irritated and inflamed causing you to experience redness, foreign body sensation, dry, and itchy eyes.
An eye examination by your eye care provider can confirm the diagnosis. Your eye care provider may recommend taking photos of your Pinguecula to determine growth over time.
Most Pingueculea that are small can be followed without treatment. However, if your Pinguecula becomes red and irritated, eye drops or ointments may be described by your eye care provider to improve your symptoms.
Large Pinguecula that grow rapidly can are unsightly, can be removed surgically. There are several surgical options and a qualified eye surgeon can determine what option is best for you.
Although surgery is successful in most cases, recurrent growth may occur even after proper surgical removal.
Wearing UV protective sunglasses, and protecting your eyes in dry and dusty conditions with protective eye wear may prevent formation and may stop further growth of Pingueculea.“