Dr Santosh G Honavar, Director, Ophthalmic and Facial Plastic Surgery and Ocular Oncology Centre For Sight, Hyderabad
In a world where discussions around cancer often revolve around more common forms, it’s imperative to bring attention to the silent yet impactful realm of eye cancer. The uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells, known colloquially as a tumor, can manifest within the eye or at remote locations, posing a profound psycho-social and economic impact on the affected individuals and their loved ones.
Eye cancer, though not as prevalent in public discourse, carries the weight of affecting life from the very first cry to the last breath. Its occurrence is notably higher in individuals with a familial history of cancer, hinting at the genetic predisposition of certain eye cancers.
The origin of eye cancer may vary, ranging from tissues constituting and protecting the eye to locations distant from the eye. Notably, cancers from other parts of the body, such as breast, lung, or gut, can metastasize through the bloodstream, affecting one or both eyes. Some of these eye-originating cancers possess a propensity to spread to vital organs like the liver, bone, and brain, underlining the critical importance of early detection and timely intervention.
The significance of eye examination is a pivotal tool for early detection. The eye, being the only organ allowing direct visualization of cancer, serves as the first information report (F.I.R) to a concealed crime scene within the body.
Recognizing symptoms such as a white reflex in a newborn’s eye, discolouration on the white part of the eye, red-pink coloured discoloration around the eye, changes in the size or color of eye surface bumps, persistent redness or pain, and any bulging of the eye, warrants an immediate consultation with an ophthalmologist. The importance of a simple photograph can aid both patients and doctors to understand the progression of the condition, providing a valuable visual reference for treatment planning.
Harnessing the power of technology, internet becomes a valuable ally in the pursuit of eye cancer management. Internet can help individuals find an ophthalmologist trained in treating eye cancers, while Photos enables a visual before-and-after comparison of treatment outcomes. Calendars play a role in scheduling regular check-ups, fostering a sense of community and support.
Centre For Sight Group of Eye Hospitals , pledges to make every effort to address eye cancer with a commitment to life, eye, and vision salvage. As a call to action, Centre For Sight urges for a collective and tireless efforts with unwavering faith in our abilities to achieve years of disease-free and happy living.