woman, in pain, with hand placed over eye. Eye cancer concept
Julie Hambleton
Julie Hambleton
February 21, 2024 ·  4 min read

Little-known Eye Cancer Symptom Can Easily Be Missed. Here’s What to Look Out For.

Eye cancer, although relatively rare, poses a significant threat to one’s vision and overall health. Being aware of the signs and symptoms of eye cancer is crucial for early detection and successful treatment. While many people are familiar with common ocular conditions, such as redness or blurred vision, there is a little-known symptom of eye cancer that often goes unnoticed and is easily mistaken for other conditions. Let’s look at the symptoms of eye cancer and learn how you can best protect your eyes from developing this devastating disease.

Understanding Eye Cancer

Eye cancer, also known as ocular cancer, refers to the presence of abnormal cells in the various structures of the eye. These abnormal cells can develop in the eyelid, iris, conjunctiva, or inside the eye, such as the retina or optic nerve. Eye cancer can be classified into different types, including melanoma, lymphoma, and squamous cell carcinoma.

Diagnosis and Prospects

Detecting eye cancer early is crucial for successful treatment and preserving vision. Ophthalmologists use various diagnostic techniques, such as a comprehensive eye exam, imaging tests like ultrasound or MRI scans, and biopsy, to confirm the presence of eye cancer. The prognosis for eye cancer depends on various factors, including the type and stage of the cancer, but early detection and prompt treatment greatly increase the chances of a positive outcome.

Read More: 4 Severe Signs of Cervical Cancer You Should Never Ignore, But Many Women Do

Little-known Symptom Prompting Concern

Recent reports have highlighted a little-known symptom of eye cancer that is often misinterpreted as a harmless condition. The reason why it is not so well known is because it is an extremely non-specific symptom: Blurred vision. Blurred vision can be a sign of near or far-sightedness, as well as other non-life threatening conditions. It can also, however, be a sign of cancer. Particularly if you notice a somewhat sudden or rapid increase in blurry vision, in contrast to your normal, this is a very good indication that you should go see your eye specialist. Again, it may not be cancer, but whatever is causing a sudden decrease in vision should be looked into as soon as possible. This is also why regular, annual eye exams are important. They are not just so your eye doctor can check to see if you need a different prescription for glasses or contact lenses. It is also so that they can see if you have the warning signs for ocular illnesses, such as eye cancer.

General Symptoms of Eye Cancer

While blurred vision is important to know as it is often not thought of as a potential cancer sign, it is important to be familiar with all of the general symptoms of eye cancer. These may include:

  1. Persistent redness or irritation in the eye.
  2. Blurry or distorted vision.
  3. A noticeable change in the size or shape of the pupil.
  4. A dark spot or lump on the iris or conjunctiva.
  5. Unexplained floaters or flashes of light.
  6. Loss of peripheral vision.
  7. Bulging or protrusion of the eye.

Regular Eye Check-ups and Seeking Medical Attention

Regular eye check-ups play a crucial role in the early detection of eye cancer. An ophthalmologist can examine your eyes thoroughly, including the structures at the back of the eye, to identify any abnormalities. Additionally, if you experience any of the symptoms mentioned above or notice any other unusual changes or discomfort in your eyes, it is important to seek prompt medical attention. Ignoring potential signs can delay a diagnosis and impact the effectiveness of treatment.

Ways to Protect Your Eyes

Prevention is always better than cure, and taking steps to protect your eyes can help reduce the risk of developing eye cancer. Here are some measures you can take:

  1. Wear protective eyewear, such as safety glasses or goggles, in situations where eye injuries are possible.
  2. Protect your eyes from excessive sun exposure by wearing sunglasses with UV protection.
  3. Avoid smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke, as it increases the risk of various eye diseases, including certain types of eye cancer.
  4. Maintain a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables, regular exercise, and proper hydration, as this can contribute to overall eye health.

The Bottom Line

Recognizing the little-known symptom of eye cancer and being aware of the general signs and symptoms are essential in early detection and treatment. Regular eye check-ups and seeking medical attention if you notice any abnormalities in your eyes are vital for preserving your vision and overall eye health. Additionally, adopting habits that prioritize eye protection can help reduce the risk of developing eye cancer. Taking care of your eyes should be a priority as they are not only the windows to the world but also essential for your well-being.

Read More: In World First, Teenage Boy is Cured of Lethal Brain Cancer


  1. NHS
  2. Cleveland Clinic
  3. Mayo Clinic
  4. MD Anderson