This study was designed to compare postoperative complications and postoperative discomfort when using glue combined with nasal margin suture fixation versus fibrin glue or sutures alone to attach conjunctival autografts among Chinese patients during pterygium excisions.
We analyzed the medical records of 150 eyes of 150 patients with primary pterygium, in which the autografts were secured by 3 different methods after pterygium excision: 50 eyes were secured with fibrin glue, 50 eyes were secured with glue + nasal sutures, and 50 eyes were secured with sutures. The more than 6 months of follow-up observation data included postoperative complications (graft loss/displacement, dehiscence, proliferative granuloma, inflammation, and hemorrhage), recurrence, and postoperative discomfort. A logistic regression procedure was conducted to evaluate the relationship between graft complications and the pterygium grade.
Graft loss/displacement occurred in 3 patients (6%) in the glue group. Graft dehiscence occurred in 8 patients (16%) in the glue group (P < .001), with 2 developing into proliferative granuloma, compared with none in the glue + nasal sutures group and the sutures group at the 3-month postoperative follow-up. Pterygium recurrence occurred in 1 patient (2.2%) in the glue group and 2 patients (4.4%) in the sutures group, compared with none in the glue + nasal sutures group at the 6 to 9 month postoperative follow-up (P = .315). There were fewer postoperative symptoms (pain, foreign body sensation, and tearing) at days 1 and 7 in the fibrin glue and glue + nasal sutures groups than in the sutures group (P < .01). The pterygium grade was a significant risk factor for graft complications (Odd ratio, OR: 5.98, Confidence interval, CI: 1.193–29.992, P = .03) in the glue group.
The modified conjunctival autograft fixation with glue + sutures on the nasal margin resulted in more stable grafts and less graft-associated complications. There was a low level of postoperative patient discomfort in the glue + sutures group. A higher grade of pterygium led to an increased rate of complications in the glue group.