Ocular oncology is the detection, diagnosis, and treatment of the many types of tumors and cancers that can occur in the eye. Dr. Wagner and Dr. Kapoor use the most modern treatment options and equipment to diagnose and solve eye issues, while reducing the risk of side effects. Common practices include chemotherapy and radiotherapy and can be administered by neurosurgeons, radiation oncologists, and pediatric oncologists.
Scientists have not fully determined what exactly causes eye cancer. Some lifestyle habits, such as excessive smoking, or hereditary factors affect the formation of all kinds of cancers. Eye cancer might also occur due to prolonged exposure to the UV rays in sunlight, similar to melanoma (i.e. skin cancer).
Tumors usually develop in the middle part of the eyeball and though you may not notice symptoms at first, over time these tumors will cause light flashes, floating black spots, and eventually loss of eyesight. These tumors often change the shape and color of your pupil and iris respectively, however, this is not always the case.
Since tumors often result in darker areas of the eyeball, doctors can diagnose eye cancer during routine physical exams. If he or she suspects a tumor, the doctor may decide to order additional tests. Usually, these include an ultrasound and angiography.
Using high frequency sound waves, an ultrasound can make full images of the inside of your eye for doctors. An angiography, on the other hand, uses dye in your bloodstream to take pictures of the inside of your eyeball. Doctors use these pictures to diagnose the potential growths, leaks and blockages associated with eye cancer.
In some cases, a doctor may decide to physically take a tissue sample out of your eye and examine it further using a microscope. This is known as a biopsy and can usually give a definitive answer as to whether or not an ocular oncologist is needed.