CareTalk: Blog for Cancer and Blood Disorders
Get insights and inspiration from Nemours’ experts in Hematology/Oncology.
At Nemours, we know that the discovery of a childhood cancer like retinoblastoma (a tumor that grows in the retina) is overwhelming. We promise to give your family everything you need to make informed decisions, to answer all your questions and to to be there for you every step of the way. Thankfully, the majority of children treated for retinoblastoma go on to lead normal lives and retain their vision.
Retinoblastoma, which occurs most commonly in children under the age of five, is a cancerous tumor that grows in the retina, the light-sensing part of the eye that sends the images we see to the brain. In children, retinoblastoma can be present in one or both eyes.
To diagnose retinoblastoma in children, our pediatric ophthalmologists will examine the retina by dilating the eye, and will also order tests such as:
While most children are born with retinoblastoma, the majority are not diagnosed until they are 12–18 months old. Pediatric ophthalmologists across the Nemours system are pioneers in detecting ophthalmologic disorders, like retinoblastoma, in utero (while babies are still in the womb). What’s more, our oncologists (cancer doctors) are recognized as some of the very best pediatric specialists and researchers in the country and across the globe. We work together to bring the most advanced retinoblastoma diagnosis and treatment to children of all ages.
Phone: (904) 697-3600
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If tests reveal that a retinoblastoma might be present in your child, our pediatric ophthalmologists will work together with Nemours oncologists (cancer doctors) to look for any other signs of the cancer in the body, and determine the disease stage and best course of treatment.
You should also know that majority of children treated for retinoblastoma go on to lead normal lives ― and more than 80% of them will retain 20/20 vision.
A unique relationship with Wolfson Children’s Hospital in Jacksonville allows our Nemours eye specialists to provide pediatric eye consultation in the emergency department for acute pediatric eye problems or injuries, and in the hospital or outpatient surgery center for for other sometimes complex eye cases, such as pediatric cataract surgery or tumors.
During any pediatric cataract surgery procedure, or any eye procedure requiring anesthesia, our Nemours pediatric anesthesiologists are right there with your child to make decisions on the best types of anesthesia medicine to make sure your child is comfortable.
Nemours Division of Pediatric Ophthalmology also partners in the care of complex pediatric retinal disorders, such as retinoblastoma in children, with a Mayo Clinic retina specialist (an ophthalmologist who has received special training in conditions involving the retina).