Pterygium recurrence after excision with conjunctival autograft: a comparison of fibrin tissue adhesive to absorbable sutures

Cornea. 2009 Jan;28(1):43-5. doi: 10.1097/ICO.0b013e318183a362.


Purpose: To evaluate the rate of recurrence after pterygium excision with conjunctival autograft (CAG) using Tisseel fibrin tissue adhesive versus absorbable sutures.

Materials and methods: Forty-seven eyes of 42 patients who had undergone primary pterygium excision surgery with CAG were retrospectively reviewed. The study group, CAG adhered using Tisseel tissue adhesive (n = 27), were compared with the control group, CAG adhered using absorbable sutures (n = 20). Postoperative courses were followed for 22-36 months after surgery. Rates of recurrence were compared using logistic regression. Recurrence was defined as regrowth of fibrovascular tissue 1 mm past the corneoscleral limbus.

Results: The recurrence rate in the Tisseel group was 3.7% compared with 20% in the sutured group (P = 0.035). Recurrence rate in the Tisseel group was comparable to previously reported rates for CAG with sutures in the literature. There was a significant inverse relationship between age and rate of recurrence overall (P = 0.025). There was no difference in time to recurrence between the groups -- with an average time to recurrence of 3.13 months.

Conclusions: In a predominantly Southern California population where there is an overall higher rate of pterygium recurrence, Tisseel tissue adhesive may improve surgical outcomes with equal to or lower long-term recurrence rates than previously reported.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Absorbable Implants*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Conjunctiva / transplantation*
  • Female
  • Fibrin Tissue Adhesive / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pterygium / surgery*
  • Recurrence
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sutures*
  • Time Factors
  • Transplantation, Autologous


  • Fibrin Tissue Adhesive