May is Melanoma Awareness Month, and all throughout the month of May we’ll be bringing you intermittent blog posts that are focused on a specific result from, or contributor to, sun skin damage. Today’s focus is on Ocular Melanoma.
Just a quick note up front. While this is primarily a skin health care blog, because this eye disease is also considered (and called) a Melanoma, we wanted to post this piece to differentiate between the two.
Ocular Melanoma is different from its skin cancer namesake in the way that, unlike the latter Melanoma, there’s no definitive proof that it’s caused by exposure to the sun or its harmful UV rays. In fact, medical science doesn’t yet know exactly what causes it. However, there are some similarities between the two Melanomas.
The tumors of both Melanomas can spread beyond their origin sites into other organs, (Ocular Melanoma most frequently chooses the liver) and both have a serious chance of being fatal if they do. As with skin cancer Melanoma, Ocular seems to be more prevalent in pale-toned, blue-eyed people. And also as with skin cancer Melanoma, Ocular can strike at any race, or either gender, at any time.
Ocular Melanoma Can Spread
While Ocular is much less common than skin cancer Melanoma, it is the most common, as well as the worst, form of eye cancer. Just like Melanoma is the worst form of skin cancer.
According to an article by melanoma.org, (which is linked below) the symptoms of ocular Melanoma include, but are not limited to: “bulging eyes, change in eye color, poor vision, or red, painful eyes.” They also state it’s even possible that in some patients no symptoms may present themselves at all.
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