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Skin cancer

Skin cancers of the eyelids and surrounding area require very precise surgery due to the close proximity to the eye and other important structures such as nerves. After a cancer is removed, careful customised reconstructive surgery is required to restore the function of the eyelids and achieve the best cosmetic result. Mr Yadav is an oculoplastic surgeon specialising in this area. He has performed thousands of cancer removals and reconstructions.

Below are patients treated by Mr Yadav showing before and after pictures:

canthus squamous cell carcinoma scc

Medial canthus squamous cell carcinoma (SCC)

reconstruction canthus squamous cell carcinoma scc

Appearance following excision and reconstruction

eyelid nodular basal cell carcinoma bcc

Lower eyelid nodular basal cell carcinoma (BCC)

reconstruction eyelid basal cell carcinoma bcc

Appearance following excision and reconstruction

canthus basal cell carcinoma bcc

Medial canthus nodular basal cell carcinoma (BCC)

reconstruction canthus basal cell carcinoma bcc

Appearance following excision and reconstruction

canthus nodular basal cell carcinoma bcc

Medial canthus nodular basal cell carcinoma (BCC)

reconstruction canthus nodular basal cell carcinoma bcc

Appearance following medial canthus reconstruction

eyelid infiltrative basal cell carcinoma bcc

Lower eyelid infiltrative basal cell carcinoma (BCC)

reconstruction infiltrative basal cell carcinoma bcc

Appearance following excision and reconstruction

eyelid squamous cell carcinoma scc

Lower eyelid squamous cell carcinoma (SCC)

reconstruction eyelid squamous cell carcinoma scc

Appearance following excision and reconstruction

What causes skin cancer around the eyes (periocular)?

The main cause of skin cancer of the eyelids and surrounding area is exposure to sunlight. The skin in these areas is unique as it contains little or no fat. This is important for the function of the eyelids but also renders them vulnerable to the effects of UV light leading to cancer formation. The risk of developing these tumours is higher in people with fair skin and those who have had excessive UV light exposure.

Who is at risk of developing skin cancer?
 

The risk of developing skin cancer around the eye is higher in people with fair skin as they have less melanin to protect against the effects of UV light. Cumulative UV exposure is also important. People that work outdoors, live in sunny climates, have previously used sunbeds or are on immunosuppressive medications are also particularly at risk. However, anyone can develop these tumours even if they have not had excessive UV exposure.  

Will it get better by itself?

 

No. Skin cancer continues to progress. Some tumours grow very slowly while others can progress rapidly. In all cases early treatment is best to reduce the risk of the cancer spreading or requiring more extensive surgery in the future.  

What types of skin cancers develop on the eyelids and surrounding areas?

The commonest type of skin cancer is a basal cell carcinoma (BCC). This is usually very slowly growing and doesn't tend to spread elsewhere unless neglected for a long time. The other main types of cancer in this area are squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), sebaceous gland carcinoma and melanoma which tend to grow fast and are at risk of spreading.  

How is periocular skin cancer treated?

Surgery is required in almost all cases. The first priority is to achieve complete removal (excision) of the cancer. Once this has been completed, attention focuses to restoring the anatomy (reconstruction). The type of reconstruction carried out is different for every patient as it depends on the site, size, depth and nature of tissue involved. Mr Yadav will tailor your surgery to your specific needs to achieve the best functional and cosmetic result possible.    

Will my cancer come back?

Once complete excision has been achieved it is very unlikely that the cancer will come back at the same site. However, people who have developed skin cancer at one site may develop further tumours elsewhere on UV-exposed skin. If you have had one skin cancer it is important to remain vigilant for suspicious growths by self-checking at regular intervals each month.

Eyelid cancer, also known as eyelid carcinoma, is a type of cancer that affects the skin and tissues of the eyelid. It is a rare form of cancer, accounting for only about 5% of all eyelid tumours. However, it is important to detect and treat eyelid cancer early, as it can spread to other parts of the face and body if left untreated.

There are several types of eyelid cancer, the most common of which is basal cell carcinoma. This type of cancer begins in the basal cells, which are found in the lower part of the epidermis (outer layer of skin). Basal cell carcinoma is usually slow-growing and rarely spreads to other parts of the body. However, it can be disfiguring if left untreated, as it can destroy surrounding skin and tissue.

Squamous cell carcinoma is another type of eyelid cancer that begins in the squamous cells, which are found in the upper part of the epidermis. This type of cancer is more aggressive than basal cell carcinoma and is more likely to spread to other parts of the body.

Eyelid cancer can also occur in the glands and muscles of the eyelid. The most common type of cancer that affects the glands is sebaceous gland carcinoma, while mycosis fungoides is a type of cancer that affects the lymphocytes (white blood cells) and causes a skin rash on the eyelid.

There are several risk factors for eyelid cancer, including exposure to UV radiation, a history of skin cancer, a weakened immune system, and a family history of skin cancer. People with fair skin, blue or green eyes, and blond or red hair are also at higher risk for developing eyelid cancer.

Symptoms of eyelid cancer may include a growth or sore on the eyelid that does not heal, a change in the appearance of the eyelid, crusting or bleeding on the eyelid, and eye irritation or dryness. If you have any of these symptoms, it is important to see an ophthalmologist or dermatologist as soon as possible.

Diagnosis of eyelid cancer usually involves a physical examination and often a biopsy of the affected tissue. A biopsy involves removing a small sample of tissue for laboratory testing to determine if cancer cells are present. If the biopsy is positive for cancer, further testing may be needed to determine the stage and extent of the cancer.

Treatment for eyelid cancer depends on the type and stage of the cancer, as well as the overall health of the patient. Common treatment options include surgery to remove the cancerous tissue, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. In some cases, a combination of these treatments may be recommended.

If caught early, eyelid cancer is usually treatable with a high success rate. However, it is important to follow up with your doctor regularly to monitor for any recurrence of the cancer. In addition, it is important to protect your skin from UV radiation by wearing sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat when outdoors, and by applying sunscreen to your face and eyelids.

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