Retinoblastoma is a malignant tumor of childhood that grows in the retina. It is the commonest eye tumor of the eye in childhood.
Untreated, retinoblastoma is almost always fatal, hence the importance of early diagnosis and treatment
Retinoblastoma can destroy a child’s vision. It can even be fatal. With early diagnosis, effective treatment is possible.
If your child’s pupil appears white, such as in a flash photograph, contact an ophthalmologist as soon as possible.
Retinoblastoma can be hereditary and is more likely to develop in children with a family history of the disease.
Retinoblastoma can occur in one or both eyes, and usually develops in the first year or two of life. It affects children of all races, and occurs in boys and girls equally.
If a child has had retinoblastoma, there is an increased chance for a second cancer to develop elsewhere in the body.
Children with retinoblastoma should have regular examinations by an ophthalmologist and a pediatric cancer specialist.
The most common sign of retinoblastoma is a change in the color of the pupil. The normally black pupil of the eye appears white, especially under bright light. This is sometimes referred to as a cat’s eye reflex or leukocoria.
It may also present as crossed eye, poor vision, painful red eye, protrusion of the eye ball (proptosis).
Occasionally it is detected on a routine eye checkup by an ophthalmologist, especially in a child with family history of this disease.
Bu hastalık kız ve erkek çocuklarında eşit sıklıkta görülür. Bu hastalarda ikinci bir tümor olma ihtimali vardır.
Parents are frequently the first to notice a white pupil when looking at photographs of their children.
To establish the diagnosis, the doctor may need to examine the child under general anesthesia. A few special tests like ultrasonography, CT scan, X-rays, MRI, blood tests, spinal tap, bone marrow biopsy etc. may be done to establish the diagnosis and to find out the extent of the disease.
With early diagnosis, retinoblastoma treatment is remarkably effective. More than 90% of children survive and many eyes are saved with a combination of medications, radiation therapy, freezing, or laser treatments.
In severe cases, the affected eye is removed to avoid spread of the tumor.