Eye Cancer & Treatment
What can be eye cancer?
An eye cancer can be a cancer in which starts inside eye. There are different types of eye cancers. There are two main areas to the eye – the front of the eye as well as the back, the eyeball. You can see these inside diagram below.
The eyeball has three layers sandwiched together
- The outer white fibrous layer, the sclera
- The middle blood rich layer, the choroid
- The inner coloured (pigmented) layer, the retina.
The inside of the eyeball can be filled that has a clear jelly like substance called vitreous humour. in which, as well as the fibrous white sclera help to keep the shape of your eyeball.
The retina lines the inside of the eyeball. in which can be the nerve layer of the eye. The cells of the retina react to light. They send messages to the brain through the optic nerve, creating in which possible for you to see.
The front of the eye
The front of the eye can be the bit you can see. The 3 layers continue round through the eyeball yet they make up different structures inside front of the eye.
The fibrous sclera becomes clear, instead of white. in which part of in which can be called the cornea as well as covers your pupil as well as iris.
The middle choroid layer becomes the iris as well as the ciliary body. The iris can be the coloured part around your pupil in which covers the lens of the eye. in which controls how much light enters your eye.
The ciliary body lies just behind the iris. in which has two functions. in which can be the muscle in which controls the focusing of the eye. as well as in which makes the clear fluid (aqueous humour) in which fills as well as shapes the front of your eye.
The middle layer of the eye can be called the uvea. The front (anterior) uvea includes the iris as well as ciliary body. The back (posterior) uvea can be the choroid. The uveal layer can be the most common place for eye cancers to start. You may hear your doctor talk about uveal, iris, ciliary body or choroidal melanomas.
The tissues surrounding the eyeball (orbit)
The orbit can be the tissue surrounding the eyeball. in which includes
Muscles in which allow the eyeball to move in different directions
Nerves attached to the eye
Cancers in in which part of the eye are called orbital cancers. They are very rare.
Structures around the eye
Structures around the eye include the eyelids as well as tear glands. They are called accessory or adnexal structures. So doctors call cancers in which develop in these tissues adnexal cancers.
Symptoms of Eye Cancer
There are several symptoms. various other eye conditions in which aren’t eye cancer can cause many of these symptoms. yet in which can be important in which you report any of them to your doctor. People with eye cancer may have
- Bulging of one eye
- Complete or partial loss of sight
- Pain in or around the eye (rare with eye cancer)
- Blurred vison
- Change inside appearance of the eye
Eye cancer can also cause
- Seeing spots or flashes of light or wiggly lines in front of your eyes
- Blinkered vision (loss of peripheral vision) – you can see what can be straight ahead clearly, yet not what can be at the sides
- A dark spot on the coloured part of the eye (the iris) in which can be getting bigger
Causes of Eye Cancer
People with blue, grey or green eyes are more likely to develop eye melanoma than people with brown eyes. inside same way, fair skinned people are more likely to get melanoma of the skin than people with darker skin.
People who have abnormal brown spots (pigmentation) on their uvea (called oculodermal melanocytosis) are at an increased risk of developing eye melanoma too.
Some families tend to have large numbers of moles on their skin, or moles in which are unusual (doctors call them atypical). The atypical moles tend to be an irregular shape or colour. They also have a tendency to become cancerous. People with moles like in which have a higher than average risk of skin melanoma as well as eye melanoma.
We know in which over exposure to sunlight can be a definite risk factor for melanoma of the skin. in which has also possibly been linked to melanoma of the eye. Men who have higher exposure to sunlight through their work have an increased risk of eye melanoma. Exposure before the age of 30 seems to be most important. Natural ageing adjustments inside eye mean in which can be unlikely in which exposure to sunlight in middle age causes eye melanoma.
Squamous cell eye cancer
The risk factors for squamous cell eye cancer include
- Infection with HIV
- Drugs in which suppress the immune system
- Human papilloma virus infection
Infection with HIV
People who have HIV are at a higher risk of squamous cell carcinoma of the eye. in which can be almost certainly because of the effect of the virus on their immune systems.
Drugs in which suppress the immune system
People who have an organ transplant need to take drugs to stop their immune systems rejecting the completely new organ. These drugs damp down the immune system generally. Because of in which, these people are at an increased risk of some types of cancer, including squamous cell carcinoma of the eye.
Human papilloma virus infection
Human papilloma virus (HPV) may cause squamous cell carcinoma of the eye in combination with various other factors. The virus causes squamous cell cancers elsewhere inside body. Researchers have found DNA through HPV in squamous cell cancers of the eye as well as in abnormal precancerous cells. People with squamous cell cancer of the eye have higher levels of antibodies to HPV in their blood than people without in which type of cancer. Infection with HPV can be very common as well as not everyone infected will get cancer. So there are probably various other factors working with the HPV in which explain why some people get in which as well as others don’t. One of these co factors may be sunlight.
Sun exposure has been linked to a higher risk of squamous cell cancer of the eye. in which type of cancer can be more common in areas of the globe where the sun’s light can be stronger than inside UK.
Lymphoma of the eye
Anyone whose immune system can be not working as well as in which should be may be more likely to develop a lymphoma of the eye. in which includes people who
- Are taking drugs to stop organ rejection after a transplant
- Have AIDS
- Have autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis
- Are born with rare medical syndromes which affect their immunity
A bacteria called chlamydophila psittaci may increase the risk of a type of eye lymphoma called ocular adnexal malt lymphoma. Chlamydophila psittaci can be caught by exposure to infected birds or domestic animals such as cats. in which usually causes lung infections yet can cause long term inflammation of the eye (conjunctivitis). Italian studies have linked ocular adnexal malt lymphoma to long term conjunctivitis due to chlamydophila psittaci. yet studies inside United States have not shown an increased risk. So we need more research to see whether there can be a link.
Treatment of Eye Cancer
Eye cancer treatment can fall in following categories:
Surgery can be used to treat some intraocular melanomas yet can be not used to treat intraocular lymphoma. in which can be used less often than inside past as the use of radiation therapy has grown.
The type of surgery depends on the location as well as size of the tumor. Patients are under general anesthesia (in a deep sleep) during these operations, as well as they usually leave the hospital 1 or 2 days afterward. The operations used to treat people with melanoma include:
- Iridectomy: Removal of part of the iris. in which operation may be an option for very modest iris melanomas.
- Iridotrabeculectomy: Removal of part of the iris, plus a modest piece of the outer part of the eyeball. modest iris melanomas may be treated with in which technique.
- Iridocyclectomy: Removal of a portion of the iris as well as the ciliary body. in which operation can be also used for modest iris melanomas.
- Resection: Doctors in some cancer centers may try to surgically resect (remove) a melanoma of the ciliary body or choroid. in which can be done for modest melanomas yet in which can be hard to remove the tumor without damaging the rest of the eye. in which can lead to severe vision problems.
- Enucleation: Removal of the entire eyeball. in which can be used for larger melanomas (T4 or large T3 tumors), yet in which may also be done for some smaller melanomas if various other treatment options could destroy useful vision inside eye anyway. During the same operation, an orbital implant can be usually put in to take the place of the eyeball. The implant can be made out of silicone or hydroxyapatite (a substance similar to bone). in which can be attached to the muscles in which moved the eye, so in which should move the same way as the eye could have. Within a few weeks after surgery, you visit an ocularist (a specialist in eye prostheses) to be fitted with an artificial eye in which will match the size as well as coloration of the remaining eye. The artificial eye can be a thin shell in which fits over the orbital implant as well as under the eyelids. Once the eye can be in place, in which will be hard to tell in which apart through the real eye.
Radiotherapy for eye melanomas
Radiotherapy uses high energy rays to kill cancer cells. in which can be truly only a suitable treatment for modest or medium sized eye melanomas.
If you have radiotherapy for a modest or medium sized eye melanoma, in which may be possible to save the eye as well as keep your sight. in which will depend on where the tumour can be within the eye, as well as its size. Sometimes you have surgery for your eye melanoma before you have radiotherapy.
There are different ways of giving radiotherapy to the eye. They are
- Brachytherapy – modest radioactive plates stitched to the eye give the radiotherapy (local radiotherapy)
- External beam therapy – a machine directs radiotherapy beams at the tumour through outside the eye
Radiotherapy for eye lymphomas
If you have lymphoma of the eye your doctor may suggest radiotherapy as for non Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Radiotherapy to your eye as well as brain can clear the cancer inside eye as well as also helps to stop in which through coming back inside brain or spinal cord.
Radiotherapy to the brain may cause problems with memory as well as thinking clearly. in which only happens in a modest number of adults. If you do develop these side effects, they can appear a few months or several years after you were first treated. Unfortunately, these late side effects are usually permanent. as well as occasionally they can become worse over a long period of time.
Most people with eye lymphomas will have chemotherapy. You may possess the chemotherapy into the fluid around your spinal cord (intrathecal chemotherapy). You are likely to have radiotherapy as well. The chemotherapy drugs in which doctors use most often are
- Cytarabine (Ara-C)
The links above take you straight to information about the specific side effects of these chemotherapy drugs.
Doctors use chemotherapy to treat eye lymphoma inside same way as for various other types of non Hodgkin’s lymphomas. Look inside non Hodgkin’s lymphoma section for information about chemotherapy for lymphoma.
Lifestyle adjustments after Eye Cancer
You can't change the fact in which you have had cancer. What you can change can be how you live the rest of your life -- creating choices to help you stay healthy as well as feel as well as you can. in which can be a time to look at your life in completely new ways. Maybe you are thinking about how to improve your health over the long term. Some people even start during cancer treatment.
creating healthier choices
For many people, a diagnosis of cancer helps them focus on their health in ways they may not have thought much about inside past. Are there things you could do in which might make you healthier? Maybe you could try to eat better or get more exercise. Maybe you could cut down on the alcohol, or give up tobacco. Even things like keeping your stress level under control may help. right now can be a Great time to think about creating adjustments in which can have positive effects for the rest of your life. You will feel better as well as you will also be healthier.
If treatment caused weight adjustments or eating or taste problems, do the best you can as well as keep in mind in which these problems usually get better over time. You may find in which helps to eat modest portions every 2 to 3 hours until you feel better. You may also want to ask your cancer team about seeing a dietitian, an expert in nutrition who can give you ideas on how to deal with these treatment side effects.
One of the best things you can do after cancer treatment can be put healthy eating habits into place. You may be surprised at the long-term benefits of some simple adjustments, like increasing the variety of healthy foods you eat. Getting to as well as staying at a healthy weight, eating a healthy diet, as well as limiting your alcohol intake may lower your risk for quite a few types of cancer, as well as having many various other health benefits.
Rest, fatigue, as well as exercise
If you were sick as well as not very active during treatment, in which can be normal for your fitness, endurance, as well as muscle strength to decline. Any plan for physical activity should fit your own situation. An older person who has never exercised will not be able to take on the same amount of exercise as a 20-year-old who plays tennis twice a week. If you haven't exercised in a few years, you will have to start slowly – maybe just by taking short walks.
If you are very tired, you will need to balance activity with rest. in which can be OK to rest when you need to. Sometimes in which's truly hard for people to allow themselves to rest when they are used to working all day or taking care of a household, yet in which can be not the time to push yourself too hard. Listen to your body as well as rest when you need to. (For more information on dealing with fatigue, please see Fatigue in People With Cancer as well as Anemia in People With Cancer.)
Keep in mind exercise can improve your physical as well as emotional health.
- in which improves your cardiovascular (heart as well as circulation) fitness.
- Along that has a Great diet, in which will help you get to as well as stay at a healthy weight.
- in which makes your muscles stronger.
- in which reduces fatigue as well as helps you have more energy.
- in which can help lower anxiety as well as depression.
- in which can make you feel happier.
- in which helps you feel better about yourself.