Get Help Common Eye Conditions Pterygium What is a Pterygium? A Pterygium is a wedge-shaped growth of thickened tissue that covers the white part of the eye. It generally starts growing near the inside corner of the eye and it often grows onto the cornea toward the pupil. What causes a Pterygium?The exact cause is unknown but it is closely associated with excessive exposure to sunlight, wind and sand and it is twice more likely to occur in men than women. SymptomsSymptoms of pterygium include persistent redness, inflammation, a sensation of a foreign body, tearing which in some instances many cause bleeding, dry and itchy eyes. TreatmentWearing protective sunglasses with side protection and regularly covering with a wide brimmed hat may reduce the affects of extreme weather conditions on the eyes. They typically do not require surgery unless it grows to such an extent that it covers the pupil, obstructs vision or presents with acute symptoms.