One of rarest forms of cancer that affects children is Retinoblastoma, which occurs in the eyes. It develops rapidly in the retina of the cell and then tends to spread drastically. There is an abnormal appearance in the retina of such kids along with common symptoms like inflammation of the eyes, swelling, watery eyes, delayed development and also acute vision issues.
HOW IS RETINOBLASTOMA DIAGNOSED?
Ophthalmologists conduct a detailed eye examination and also evaluate your symptoms. The advice of an oncologist may be sought for confirmation of diagnosis. Imaging tests like ultrasound, MRI and CT scan help in determining the growth of cancer to other parts.
HOW IS RETINOBLASTOMA TREATED?
Treatment for retinoblastoma depends on whether it is intraocular (within the eye) or extraocular (outside the eye).The International Retinoblastoma Staging System (IRSS) is used for determining the stage of retinoblastoma.The stages are based on how much cancer remains after surgery to remove the tumor and whether the cancer has spread.
In Stage 0, the tumor is in the eye only and the tumor is treated without surgery.
In Stage I, the tumor is in the eye only but the eye has been removed and no cancer cells remain.In Stage II, the tumor is in the eye which has been removed and there are cancer cells left that can be seen only with a microscope.In Stage III, cancer has spread from the eye to tissues around the eye socket and eye to lymph nodes near the ear or in the neck.In Stage IVa, cancer has spread to the blood and more tumors may have spread to other parts of the body such as the bone or liver.In stage IVb or the final stage, cancer has spread to the brain or spinal cord and other parts of the body.
DID YOU KNOW?
Children treated for retinoblastoma are under the risk of the cancer reappearing.