Ocular Melanoma – What is it, Symptoms and Treatments!

Ocular Melanoma – What it is, Symptoms and Treatments  that many are unaware of. Furthermore, Ocular Melanoma is a type of cancer that develops in the cells that produce melanin – the pigment that gives your skin its color. Your eyes also have melanin-producing cells and can develop melanoma.

Ocular Melanoma is also called Ocular Melanoma . Most eye melanomas form in the part of the eye that you can’t see when looking in the mirror. This makes Ocular Melanoma difficult to detect. Also, Ocular Melanoma does not normally cause any initial signs or symptoms.

Treatment is available for eye melanomas. Treating some small eye melanomas may not interfere with your vision. However, treatment for large eye melanomas often causes vision loss.


Causes of Ocular Melanoma:  It is not clear what causes Ocular Melanoma , also called Ocular Melanoma . Doctors know that Ocular Melanoma occurs when errors occur in the DNA of healthy eye cells .

DNA errors tell cells to grow and multiply out of control, so mutated cells continue to live when they would normally die. The mutated cells accumulate in the eye and form an Ocular Melanoma .

Ocular melanoma most often develops in the cells of the uvea, the vascular layer of your eye between the retina, the thin layer of tissue that lines the inner back wall of your eyeball, and the white of your eye (sclera). Ocular melanoma can occur on the front of the uvea (iris and ciliary body) or on the back of the uvea (choroid layer).

Ocular Melanoma can also occur in the outermost layer at the front of the eye (conjunctiva), in the socket that surrounds the eyeball, and on the eyelid, although these types of Ocular Melanoma are very rare.

Ocular Melanoma Symptoms: Ocular  Melanoma can not cause signs and symptoms. When they do occur, the signs and symptoms of Ocular Melanoma can include:

  • A growing dark spot in the iris
  • A sensation of flashing lights
  • A change in the shape of the dark circle (pupil) in the center of your eye
  • Poor or blurry vision in one eye
  • peripheral vision loss
  • Sensation of flashes and dust spots in your vision (floats)

When to See a Doctor:  Make an appointment with your doctor if you have any signs or symptoms that worry you. Sudden changes in your vision indicate an emergency, so seek immediate care in these situations.
Risk factors: Risk factors for primary eye melanoma include:

  • Light eye color. People with blue eyes or green eyes have a higher risk of eye melanoma.
  • being white. White people have a higher risk of eye melanoma than people of other races.
  • Age increase. The risk of ocular melanoma increases with age.
  • Certain hereditary skin disorders. A condition called dysplastic nevus syndrome, which causes abnormal moles, can increase your risk of developing melanoma on your skin and in your eyes .

Additionally, people with abnormal skin pigmentation involving the eyelids and surrounding tissues and increased pigmentation in their uvea – known as ocular melanocytosis – are also at increased risk of developing Ocular Melanoma .

  • Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light. There is some evidence that exposure to UV light, such as sunlight or tanning beds, can increase the risk of ocular melanoma.

Ocular Melanoma Complications: Ocular Melanoma  complications caninclude:

  • Increased pressure in the eye (glaucoma). A growing eye melanoma can cause glaucoma. Signs and symptoms of glaucoma can include eye pain and redness, as well as blurred vision.
  • Vision loss. Large eye melanomas often cause vision loss in the affected eye and can cause complications such as retinal detachment which also cause vision loss.

Small eye melanomas can cause vision loss if they occur in critical parts of the eye. You may have difficulty seeing in the center of your vision or to the side. Very advanced eye melanomas can cause complete loss of vision.

  • Ocular melanoma that spreads beyond the eye. Ocular melanoma can spread outside the eye and to distant areas of the body, including the liver, lungs, and bones.

Preparing for Your Appointment:  Start by seeing your GP or general practitioner if you have any signs or symptoms that worry you. If your doctor suspects you have an eye problem, you may be referred to an eye specialist (ophthalmologist).

If your doctor suspects you have melanoma in the eye , you may be referred to an eye surgeon who specializes in treating eye melanoma . This specialist can explain your treatment options and may refer you to other specialists, depending on the treatments you choose.

Because consultations can be brief, and because there is often a lot of space to cover, it’s a good idea to be well prepared. Here’s some information to help you prepare and what to expect from your doctor.

What You Can Do:  Be aware of any pre-appointment restrictions. The moment you make the appointment, be sure to ask if there’s anything you need to do in advance, like restricting your diet.

  • Write down any symptoms you are experiencing, including any that seem unrelated to why you booked the appointment.
  • Write down key personal information, including any major stresses or recent life changes.
  • Make a list of all the medications, vitamins, or supplements you are taking.
  • Consider bringing a family member or friend along. Sometimes it can be difficult to remember all the information provided during an appointment. Someone who accompanies you may remember something you missed or forgot.
  • Write down questions to ask your doctor.

Your time with your doctor is limited, so preparing a list of questions can help you make the most of your time. List your questions from most important to least important in case time runs out. For eye melanoma, some basic questions for your doctor include:

  • Do I have Eye Melanoma ?
  • Where is my eye in melanoma located?
  • How big is my eye melanoma?
  • Has my eye melanoma spread beyond my eye?
  • Do I need additional tests?
  • What are my treatment options?
  • Can any treatment cure my melanoma eye?
  • What are the possible side effects of each treatment?
  • Do I have to have treatment?
  • How long can I take to decide on a treatment?
  • Is there a treatment that you feel is best for me?
  • How will the treatment affect my daily life? Can I keep working?
  • How will the treatment affect my vision?
  • I have these other health conditions. How can I better manage them during treatment?
  • Should I be referred to additional specialists? What will it cost, and will my insurance cover it?
  • Are there brochures or other printed materials I can take with me? What websites do you recommend?
  • What will determine whether I should plan a follow-up visit?

In addition to the questions you’ve prepared to ask your doctor, don’t hesitate to ask any other questions that occur to you.

What to expect from your doctor: Your doctor  is likely to ask you a series of questions. Being ready to answer them can allow you more time to cover other points you want to address. Your doctor may ask:

  • When did you first start experiencing symptoms?
  • Were your symptoms continuous or occasional?

Ocular Melanoma Tests and Diagnosis:  To diagnose Ocular Melanoma , your doctor may recommend:

  • Eye exam. Your doctor will examine the outside of your eye, looking for enlarged blood vessels that could indicate a tumor inside your eye . Then, with the help of instruments, your doctor will examine your eyes . One method, called ophthalmoscopy, uses lenses and a bright light mounted on your doctor’s forehead — a bit like a miner’s lamp. Another method, called slit lamp biomicroscopy, uses a microscope that produces an intense beam of light to illuminate the inside of your eye.
  • Eye ultrasound. An ultrasound of the eye uses high-frequency sound waves from a handheld and wand device called a transducer to produce images of your eye. The transducer is placed on your closed eyelid or on the front surface of your eye.
  • Image of blood vessels in and around the tumor (angiogram). During an angiogram of your eyes , a colored dye is injected into a vein in your arm. The dye travels to the blood vessels in your eyes. A camera with special filters to detect the dye takes flash pictures every few seconds for several minutes.
  • Removing a suspicious tissue sample for testing. In some cases, your doctor may recommend a procedure to remove a tissue sample (biopsy) from your eyes . To remove the sample, a thin needle is inserted into your eye and used to extract suspicious tissue. The tissue is tested in a laboratory to determine if it contains Ocular Melanoma cells. An eye biopsy is usually not necessary to diagnose Ocular Melanoma .

Determining if the cancer has spread:  Your doctor may also recommend additional tests and procedures to determine if the melanoma has spread (metastasized) to other parts of your body. Tests can include:

  • Blood tests to measure liver function
  • chest X-ray
  • Computed tomography (CT)
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
  • abdominal ultrasound

Ocular Melanoma Treatments:  Your eye melanoma treatment options will depend on the location and size of the eye melanoma, as well as your overall health and your preferences.

Small Eye Melanomas:  A small eye melanoma may not require immediate treatment. If the melanoma is small and not growing, you and your doctor may choose to wait and watch for signs of growth. If the melanoma grows or causes complications, you may choose to undergo treatment at that time.

Surgery:  Operations used to treat Ocular Melanoma include procedures to remove part of the eye or a procedure to remove the entire eye. Options can include:

  • Surgery to remove the melanoma and a small area of ​​healthy tissue. Surgery to remove the melanoma and a band of healthy tissue that surrounds it may be an option for treating small melanomas.

The procedure you will undergo depends on the size and location of your Ocular Melanoma . For example, surgery to remove a small melanoma that affects the iris is called an iridectomy. Surgery to remove a choroidal melanoma is called a choroidectomy.

  • Surgery to remove the entire eye (enucleation). Enucleation is often used for large eye tumors. It can also be used if the tumor is causing eye pain.

After the melanoma eye is removed, an implant is inserted in the same position and the muscles that control the eye’s movement are attached to the implant, which allows the implant to move. After having had some time to heal, an artificial eye (prosthesis) is made. The front surface of your new eye will be custom painted to match your existing eye.

Radiation Therapy: Radiation  therapy uses high-powered energy beams, such as protons or gamma rays, to kill cancer cells. Radiation therapy is typically used for  small to medium-sized ocular melanoma . Radiation is usually delivered to the tumor by placing a radioactive patch in the eye, directly over the tumor in a procedure called brachytherapy.

The plate is held in place with temporary stitches. The plate looks similar to a bottle cap and contains several radioactive seeds. The plaque remains in place for four to five days before being removed.

Radiation can also come from a machine that directs radiation, such as proton beams, into your eye (external beam radiation or teletherapy). This type of radiation therapy is often given over the course of several days.

Laser Treatment:  Treatment that uses a laser to kill melanoma cells may be an option in certain situations. One type of laser treatment, called thermotherapy, uses an infrared laser and is sometimes used in combination with radiation therapy.

Cold Treatments:  Extreme cold (cryotherapy) can be used to destroy melanoma cells in some small eye melanomas, but this treatment is not commonly used.

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