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Like all cancers, retinoblastoma is the result of uncontrolled cell division.

Cancer cells replicate constantly, creating tumors that interfere with organ function. Some factors that can increase an individuals risk of developing any cancer include:
Old age Smoking Exposure to ionizing radiation Exposure to sunlight without sunscreen Exposure to toxic chemicals Certain pathogens Family history

Works Cited: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/types/reti noblastoma http://www.cancer.org/Cancer/Retinoblastom a/index http://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/condition/retinoblasto ma http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/P MH0002025/ http://www.djo.harvard.edu/site.php?url=/pati ents/pi/436 http://www.mskcc.org/pediatrics/childhood/re tinoblastoma/treatment http://www.graphicshunt.com/health/images/r etinoblastoma-2387.htm http://www.chla.org/atf/cf/%7B1CB444DF77C3-4D94-82FAE366D7D6CE04%7D/eye_diagram.jpg

Retinoblastoma:
Cancer of the Retina

Retinoblastoma is different in that it typically occurs in early childhood. One out of four retinoblastoma cases are present at birth, and most cases are detected in children under two years old. Retinoblastomas causes include:
Family history- 40% of retinoblastoma cases are hereditary Mutation of the RBI tumor suppressor gene

A guide to the most common eye cancer in children


Zach Effman Mrs. Tirado BiologyHP8

Fortunately, retinoblastoma is both rare and treatable. Only three hundred cases occur yearly in America, and 98% of victims survive if the cancer is detected before it spreads. Treatments include: Enecleation- the removal of the eye.
This procedure has a near perfect success rate and is the most common treatment. Surgery takes under an hour, and is painless

Early detection is critical if a patient is to be cured. Signs that a child may have retinoblastoma are: Crossed eyes Abnormal iris coloration Double vision- in young
children this can result in persistent disorientation

Retinoblastoma begins on the retina, the area in the back of the eye that detects light. If not treated, the tumor can grow to fill much of the eye. Cancerous masses may break off from the tumor, float through the vitreous body, and begin to grow in new areas. If these growths block fluid channels, pressure increases in the eye can cause pain and lead to blindness. Retinoblastoma spreads only rarely. It can grow into the brain via the optic nerve or grows through the walls of the eye into surrounding tissue. Once the cancer has left the eye, it can spread to anywhere in the body through the circulatory system. The primary tumor will be easily detectable by then.

Chemotherapy- the use of drugs to


combat caner. Children have a higher resistance to chemotherapy, reducing harmful side effects of this treatment

Poor vision White eye- the pupil may


appear white in photographs in contrast to the typical red eye. An example of white eye can be seen in the child on the cover of this pamphlet

Cryotherapy- a process by which a


probe is inserted into the eye and is used to freeze the tumor. This process only works on small tumors and must be repeated many times. It may cause temporary, harmless swelling

Laser Therapy- in which a powerful


laser is shined through the pupil at the retina. This treatment is very effective at killing small tumors and has no negative side effects

If a child is suspected to have this disease, a doctor will perform an eye exam, eye ultrasound, or MRI or CT scan

Prevention
Retinoblastoma is hereditary. People who have had retinoblastoma may pass on a cancerous gene to their offspring. They should consult a doctor before making the decision to have children.

Radioactive Plaques- disks of


radioactive material that are inserted into the eye where they kill tumors. They remain in the eye for a week and may cause cataracts and permanently damage sight