Retinoblastoma is a rare eye cancer . Childhood retinoblastoma originates in a part of the eye called the retina. The retina is a thin layer of nerve tissue .
Retinoblasts (immature cells of the retina) multiply during gestation and early life to make enough cells to create the retina.
Retinoblastoma is a cancer that affects these retinoblasts, causing them to multiply too much, and limit the process of differentiation.
Retinoblastoma in children can occur in one eye (unilateral) or both eyes (bilateral). It is affecting 300 children each year.
This disease occurs most often in children under the age of 4 years, with 80% of cases occurring under age 3 years and virtually none above age 6 years. Most children (99%) with eye cancer generally get cured.
Signs and Symptoms of Retinoblastoma:
A pupil that looks white or black instead of red when light hits it, a crossed eye (looking either toward the nose or toward the ear), poor vision, a red, painful eye and an enlarged pupil.
Treatment for Retinoblastoma is chemotherapy (intra-arterial or systemic) to reduce the tumor size. Chemotherapy followed by followed by some form of local treatment and possibly radiation therapy and surgery. Treatment may prolong from months till years particularly in eyes treated with cryotherapy and/or photocoagulation after chemotherapy.
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