New approach for pterygium removal using 20 % ethanol

Erez Tsumi, Jaime Levy, Anry Pitchkhadze, Amjad Baidousi, Tova Lifshitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The aim of this study is to present a new method for pterygium removal using ethanol 20 % solution, applied to a retrospective consecutive case series conducted in the Department of Ophthalmology, Soroka University Medical Center, Beer-Sheva, Israel. The technique adopted the following procedure. After subconjunctival bupivacaine hydrochloride 0.5 % injection, a metal ring well, as used in laser-assisted subepithelial keratectomy, was placed above the head of the pterygium. A few drops of ethanol 20 % were applied inside the well and maintained in place for 40 s. The ethanol was then washed with Balanced Salt Solution. Pterygium was easily separated starting at 2 mm central to the head using a spatula. The apex was excised with further separation of the fibrovascular tissue towards the base. The base was excised and mitomycin C 0.02 % applied for 2.5 min. The ocular surface was profusely washed leaving the bare sclera. Records were reviewed of all the patients who underwent pterygium removal with ethanol between May 2006 and March 2007. The results showed that 68 eyes from 64 patients were operated on. There were no intraoperative complications. During follow-up periods of at least 12 months, no serious side effects were detected and only two cases (2.9 %) of recurrence were observed. The results obtained show that the Pterygium removal using alcohol 20 % solution is a simple procedure, creates a clear separation plane between the pterygium and the underlying cornea, and is a safe procedure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)443-448
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Ophthalmology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Alcohol
  • Ethanol
  • Excision
  • Mitomycin
  • Pterygium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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