Critical eye protection notice - pterygium likely caused by sawdust irritation

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Forum topic by johngoes posted 01-19-2010 02:48 AM 3034 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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54 posts in 2866 days

01-19-2010 02:48 AM

Topic tags/keywords: safety eye protection pterygium

Last Friday my guitar teacher said I had a growth on my eye. I’ve never noticed it before but when I examined my eye I did indeed have something odd growing on my right eye, just under the eyelid on the ouside of my eye (where the upper & lower eyelids meet) and unnoticeable unless I direct my eyes to the left. So I went to the doctor today and he had me schedule a further appointment with an ophthalmologist for a pterygium of the eye.

Further research finds that pterygium is a benign tumor that is typically found in cases of high sun exposure or in cases of chronic eye irritation. I always wear safety glasses but was always annoyed at how the safety glasses didn’t prevent dust from irritating my eyes, but didn’t do anything about it. In fact, just this weekend I went to the big box store looking to see if they had better eye protection against dust and was disappointed they didn’t. This morning, before the doctor’s appointment, I finally looked online and found safety goggles that appear to be more effective against dust and ordered them.

In my shop, the work that was most likely to be eye irritating was cutting dadoes and rabbits on the table saw with dado blades. But having learned what my eye condition is likely caused by, I will wear the safety goggles in all dust generating situations.

If any of you find your eyes are particularly irritated by dust from woodworking, I would seriously recommend better eye protection than the wrap around safety glasses typically sold these days.

You can google pterygium to see pictures – yes my eye looks that gross under the eyelid and at some point I will probably have surgery.

-- Anybody can become a woodworker, but only a Craftsmen can hide his mistakes!

2 replies so far

View johngoes's profile


54 posts in 2866 days

#1 posted 01-19-2010 05:14 AM

I read an article that I hope to try on the goggles – on the inside of a clean set of goggles rub a thin film of plain bar soap (unscented, etc). Then rub the film out with clean soft cloth (not paper towels) until clear again. It’s supposed to prevent fogging except in the most extreme temperature differentials.

-- Anybody can become a woodworker, but only a Craftsmen can hide his mistakes!

View Taigert's profile


593 posts in 3264 days

#2 posted 01-19-2010 11:55 AM

I an thinking about buting the Trend Pro helmet system to keep the dust out of my eyes and lungs. It’s not the cheapest way to go but if it works the money maybe well spent.
I was resawing old poplar beams Sunday night with my dust mask on my glassses were foging up so bad I was having trouble seeing. It meant constant stoping to clean the lenses. Then Monday morning my eyes were still feeling like they were full of crap, on top of that I had a sinus headache from the dust being inhaled.
So the purchase of the Trend will be happening this week I think.

-- Taigert - Milan, IN

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