What Is the Orbit?
The orbit is the bony structure that houses the eyeball, often called the eye socket. The orbit is a complicated structure comprised of a network of tissues, bones, and nerves.
What Is An Orbital Tumor?
An orbital tumor is a growth that occurs anywhere inside of the orbit. Not all orbital tumors are cancerous. There are many different types of tumors that can grow inside of the orbit. Some affect the bone, others affect the vascular system or the muscle.
What Are the Symptoms of an Orbital Tumor?
Although not all tumors are cancerous, the orbit is very compact and crowded, and even small tumors can cause significant symptoms and serious vision problems. The most common sign of an orbital tumor is the protrusion of the eye. This symptom can often be mistaken for Grave’s disease until examined by an eye doctor. Some types of tumors can cause profound vision problems such as double vision or vision loss. Other tumors can affect muscle function in the eye.
Treatments for Orbital Tumors
Before treatment can begin, the doctor must diagnose the specific type of orbital tumor. To determine the diagnosis, he will complete a thorough examination, and you will also undergo an MRI or CT scan to determine the exact location and size of the tumor. This will also help the doctor determine the exact type of tumor. This is all necessary information when devising a treatment plan. In some cases, additional specialists may be involved for co-management.
Depending on your circumstances, one of the following treatments will be offered:
- Stereotactic radiosurgery. This is a non-invasive procedure that focuses beams of radiation onto the tumor in an effort to destroy it.
- Chemotherapy is a procedure in which cancer-fighting drugs are injected into the bloodstream. For orbital tumors, it is possible to deliver tumor-destroying drugs directly to the site of the tumor. This helps avoid the whole-body toxicity that chemotherapy can cause.
- Surgery is typically performed only if other treatments fail. The orbit is complex, so it is important to go to an experienced orbital surgeon in Annandale.
If you suspect that you have an orbital tumor or if you have already been diagnosed, be sure to contact us in Annandale, Arlington or Manassas to see what your treatment plans are.