Why choose us for eye cancer?
At Mays Cancer Center, home to UT Health San Antonio MD Anderson Cancer Center, a team of highly trained specialists treats eye cancers with precision and compassion.
Fellowship-trained surgeons (including ophthalmologists and dermatologists) work together to treat early and advanced tumors in and around the eye. After treatment, we use reconstructive surgery to restore the eye’s look and function as much as possible.
Find out more about our eye cancer program.
What you need to know about eye cancer
- Cancer can grow from the tissues in and around the eye. An eye tumor may affect your vision or health in different ways.
- Eye cancers are rare. They can affect children and adults of all ages. A white pupil (which may also look like a white glow in the eye) should be evaluated by a pediatric ophthalmologist. In rare instances, it can be a symptom of retinoblastoma, a common childhood eye cancer.
- Excessive ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure (from the sun or indoor tanning beds) may cause some eye cancers. Wearing protective sunglasses and not smoking cigarettes may reduce your risk of developing eye cancer. Regular skin cancer screenings can detect skin cancers around the eye in early stages.
- Eye cancer treatment often involves surgery. Our surgeons have specialized training in eye cancer treatment and plastic and reconstructive surgery. We coordinate cancer treatment and reconstructive surgery, helping you access all the services you need within one health system.
How to talk to your doctor about eye cancer
You may have many questions about what an eye cancer diagnosis means for your vision or long-term health. Our team will sit down with you to explain your diagnosis and detail your treatment options.
If you need surgery, you can trust our surgeons’ expertise. They are highly trained to perform intricate procedures that remove cancer and rebuild the eye. We use leading surgical techniques to preserve the eye’s look and function whenever possible.
We welcome you to bring a trusted friend or family member to appointments with you. This support person can help you remember critical details or make treatment decisions. Our team will also support you throughout the care process.
You might want to ask your doctor about:
- Additional testing, if any, you may need to inform your diagnosis or treatment plan
- Cancer details, including the size and type of eye cancer and whether it has spread (or could in the future)
- Treatment options, including how treatment could affect your eye’s appearance or function
- Potential treatment side effects and how we can help you recover
We treat many types of eye cancers, including:
- Eyelid tumors: Basal cell carcinoma, the most common type of skin cancer, makes up most eyelid cancers.
- Intraocular tumors: Cancer can develop inside the eyeball. Ocular melanoma, also called uveal melanoma, starts in the uvea tissue inside the eyeball.
- Orbital tumors: Lymphoma and sarcoma are two types of cancer that can develop from connective tissues in the orbital space, which surrounds the eye.
- Rhabdomyosarcoma is a rare type of childhood cancer that can develop near the eye.