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A triangular mass of mucous membrane growing on the conjunctiva, usually near the inner canthus.
Overgrowth of the cuticle forward on the nail.
(vertebrate zoology)
A generalized vertebrate limb.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a disease of the conjunctiva of the eye in man and animals, characterized by formation of a conjunctival fold of the sclera that gradually grows on the surface of the cornea and becomes united with it. In man, pterygium is generally caused by prolonged exposure to strong wind, dust, or chemical irritants. The disease develops in the interpalpebral fissure, usually on the nasal side, in the form of a triangle whose base lies on the sclera. If the pterygium reaches the cornea’s optic zone, vision is reduced. The disease is treated surgically.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.