Vertical conjunctival bridge flaps in pterygium surgery.

Ophthalmic surgery, lasers & imaging : the official journal of the International Society for Imaging in the Eye

PubMedID: 12875455

Kaya M, Tunç M. Vertical conjunctival bridge flaps in pterygium surgery. Ophthalmic Surg Lasers Imaging. 2003;34(4):279-83.
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE
To evaluate the recurrence rates and clinical outcome following pterygium surgery using a vertical conjunctival bridge flap technique.

PATIENTS AND METHODS
The study included 500 patients operated on for primary or recurrent pterygium during 6 years (between 1994 and 2000). Following receipt of informed consent, the patients were randomly distributed into two treatment groups: 250 patients were operated on using a vertical conjunctival bridge flap technique (Group 1) and the remaining 250 patients were operated on using a bare sclera technique (Group 2). Demographic characteristics of the patients were compared by analysis of variance. The mean follow-up period was 16 months, with a minimum of 6 months. The intraoperative and postoperative complications and recurrence rates were compared for each group.

RESULTS
There was no statistically significant difference in age and gender distribution of the patients between the two groups (P > .05). The most common intraoperative complication was a broken or irregular flap, which was seen in 6 of 250 cases (2%) in the vertical conjunctival bridge flap group. The recurrence rate was 2% in the vertical conjunctival bridge flap group compared with 40% in the bare sclera group (P < .01).

CONCLUSION
The vertical conjunctival bridge flap technique is a safe and effective method in pterygium surgery and offers low recurrence rates.