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Orbital Tumors

Orbital Tumors

Orbital tumors are abnormal growths or swelling in the tissue behind the eye. This particular area is called the orbit, a bony cavity in the skull which protects the eyeballs, muscles and tissues surrounding them. Due to unknown causes, the orbit is prone to cancerous tumors, which affect more commonly young women.

Some typical symptoms for orbital tumors include severe pain in the eye, restricted movement and decreased or double vision. In order to assess signs of the tumor, a complete examination of the affected eye is required. The following tests are used to tell the difference between tumors and pseudotumors, which do not spread to other tissues or organs in the body, and can occur in people who suffer from thyroid diseases:

  • CT scans
  • MRI
  • Ultrasound
  • X-ray
  • Biopsy

Orbital Tumors – Treatments

Severe orbital tumors exercise damaging pressure on the eye and require surgical procedures in order to remove the bones of the orbit and relieve the pressure. Some other cases call for treatments with corticosteroids.

Depending on the size and location of the tumor, radiation treatment, proton therapy and laser surgery are likely to be chosen as options for orbital tumors treatments because they provide superior accuracy, and help sparing optic nerves and healthy tissues.

The most commonly applied orbital tumors treatments are:

  • Chemotherapy
  • Radiotherapy
  • Laser therapy
  • Plaque therapy
  • Enucleation of the eye – in which the eye is removed without muscles or eyelids, and an implant is inserted.
  • Evisceration – the eye contents are removed, but the sclera and the white part of the eye is left.
  • Exenteration – everything is removed and a prostheses is made to cover the defect.
  • Iridectomy – removes the affected parts of the iris
  • Choroidectomy – a choroid layer is removed
  • Eyewall resection – which requires cutting into the eye.
  • Iridocyclectomy – in which the iris and the ciliary body muscle are removed

When orbital tumors are detected early, patients have 95% chance of full recovery. It is essential to contact the ophthalmologist if any of the symptoms are experienced!

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