Ocular Cancer.

Ocular Oncology Negligence Compensation Lawyers.

Ocular cancer, also known as eye cancer, comes in several different forms and affects the eyes and the surrounding skin.

As with most cancers, when ocular cancer is detected and treated in the early stages there is a higher chance of survival. However, if diagnosis is delayed for any reason and the cancer spreads beyond the eye, treatment can become more invasive and intense, and the survival rate begins to decrease.

Being diagnosed with ocular cancer will be a worrying time for you and your family, and the distress you feel can be heightened if it comes to light that your cancer was allowed to progress unduly due to a delay in diagnosis. This may be due to your doctor misdiagnosing your cancer as a different condition, or the wrong course of treatment being prescribed to you.

If your ocular cancer has worsened due to the negligence of a medical professional, you may be able to claim compensation. Here at Lanyon Bowdler we handle each case with care, ensuring we fight on your behalf to seek admission and an apology from the responsible party, as well as securing compensation reflective of the level of suffering you have endured.

If you’d like to find out more about how we work and what we can do for you, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. One of our friendly and knowledgeable medical negligence specialists will be happy to discuss your case and offer advice.

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What is Ocular Cancer?

Ocular cancer affects the eyes, as well as the skin and structures surrounding the eyes, such as the eyelids and tear ducts. There are a number of different types of ocular cancer which affect different parts of the eye, and these include:

  • Melanoma – This type of cancer affects the melanocytes, which are the pigmented cells found deep within the eyes, and mostly affects the uveal tract and the choroid layer. It is the most common form of eye cancer, and occurs when the melanocyte cells begin to divide and multiply uncontrollably, developing into uveal melanoma or choroidal melanoma.
  • Intraocular lymphoma – This type of cancer typically begins in a part of the immune system, also known as the lymphatic system, and is usually of the non-Hodgkin’s variety.
  • Retinoblastoma – This type of ocular cancer most commonly occurs in children. It develops in the retina, which is found at the back of the eye, and can affect one or both eyes. One of the key signs of retinoblastoma is an unusually white pupil reflex, which is particularly noticeable in photographs.
  • Conjunctival melanoma – This type of cancer forms in the melanocytes of the conjunctiva, which is the thin membrane that lines the eyeball and eyelid. It is treatable when detected early enough, but if left undetected it can spread to the lymph nodes and throughout the body.
  • Basal and squamous cell carcinoma – These are common forms of skin cancer, particularly associated with overexposure to UV rays, and they can form on any area of skin which has been exposed to the sun, including the eyelids.
  • Secondary eye cancer – When a tumour elsewhere in the body spreads to the eye it is known as secondary eye cancer. In women, the leading cause of secondary eye cancer is from a breast tumour, and in men it is most often due to a lung tumour.

Your Ocular Cancer questions answered

What are the symptoms of eye cancer?

The symptoms of eye cancer can vary depending on which part of the eye is affected, and in the majority of cases the symptoms can go largely unnoticed, until the cancer is detected during a routine eye test.

However, there are a number of symptoms to be aware of, including:

  • Blurred vision
  • Shadowy vision
  • Flashes of light or wriggly lines in your vision
  • Partial or complete loss of vision in one or both eyes
  • Bulging in one or both eyes
  • A lump on the eyelid that is growing in size
  • A dark patch on the eye that’s growing bigger
  • Pain in or around the eye

In children with retinoblastoma, you may notice that one of their pupils looks very white, and they may also develop a squint which can indicate that their eyes are not aligned. If you notice any of the above symptoms in yourself or your child, it is vital to book an appointment with an optician, or your GP, as soon as possible.

How is eye cancer diagnosed?

If you have presented to your GP or optician with symptoms of ocular cancer, or it has been detected at a routine eye examination, you will then be referred to an ophthalmologist for further testing, which may include:

  • An eye examination to produce photographs of the inside of your eye
  • An ultrasound scan performed over closed eyelids
  • A fluorescein angiogram which involves an intravenous dye that travels through the blood vessels of the eye
  • An optical coherence tomography scan which used a laser light to see the inside of the eye and produce an image of it
  • A biopsy to remove a small sample of tissue or fluid to be sent to the lab to be tested for cancerous cells

If your GP or optician failed to refer you to a specialist, or you were referred to an ophthalmologist and they failed to carry out the necessary tests, and your condition has worsened as a result, you may be entitled to claim compensation. Here at Lanyon Bowdler we have helped many clients in your position to seek justice and claim what they deserve after being let down by a medical professional.

How is ocular cancer treated?

The treatment options available to you will typically depend on the type of eye cancer with which you are afflicted, but the two main options are radiotherapy and surgery.

  • Radiotherapy – This method of treatment uses radiation to destroy cancerous cells, and there are three different types that can be used in the treatment of ocular cancer: brachytherapy, proton beam radiotherapy, and stereotactic radiotherapy.
  • Surgery – Depending on the size and location of the ocular tumour, it may mean removing just the tumour, or part or all of the eye in order to remove all of the cancerous tissue. If the whole eye is removed it can be replaced with an artificial eye that looks and moves in a natural way.
  • Other treatments – In some cases, such as retinoblastoma and ocular lymphoma, it may be necessary to treat ocular cancer with chemotherapy. Laser therapy such as transpupillary thermotherapy, or photodynamic therapy uses either infrared lasers or a light-sensitive drug paired with a laser to effectively destroy cancerous cells in some cases of ocular cancer.

It is often the case that multiple types of treatment are used in conjunction with one another to fully remove the cancer. For example, radiotherapy may be used before surgery to reduce the size of the tumour, or after surgery to ensure that any remaining cancerous cells are destroyed.

If you believe you have received the wrong kind of treatment for your ocular cancer and it has led to your condition worsening, or caused you undue side effects, you may be able to make a claim for medical negligence compensation.

What can cause ocular cancer?

Melanoma is the most common type of eye cancer in adults, and it is not fully known why it develops, but doctors have identified several factors that can potentially increase the likelihood of a person developing ocular cancer.

These risk factors include:

  • Being aged 50 or over
  • Having light coloured eyes
  • Having very fair white skin
  • Having multiple large or unusually shaped moles
  • Having pigmented lesions or ‘eye freckles’
  • Being over exposed to UV radiation either via sunbed use or exposure to sunlight

Doctors have identified a faulty gene which may be the cause of retinoblastoma in some children, and they are more likely to develop it if a parent or close biological relative has also had the condition.

As with most conditions, being in possession of one or more of the known risk factors does not necessarily mean that a person will definitely develop ocular cancer. Likewise, it is entirely possible to develop the condition without having any of the associated risk factors. However, if you present to your GP or optician with symptoms, or your symptoms are detected during a routine eye examination, and you fall into any of the at-risk categories, your doctor has a duty of care to refer you for further testing. Failure to do so can constitute medical negligence.

What is ocular cancer negligence?

All medical professionals owe a duty of care to their patients to provide the expected level of service, and any breach in that duty of care could have undue consequences for the patient and their family. For example, if your optician notices an abnormality during a routine eye exam, they have a duty of care to inform you and refer you for further testing. Failure to uphold their duty of care could lead to your ocular cancer going undiagnosed and spreading to other parts of your body.

Some of the potential ways in which eye cancer negligence can occur include:

  • Failure to detect an abnormality or growth in or around the eye
  • Failure to refer the patient to a specialist for further testing
  • Failure to carry out the necessary diagnostic tests
  • Failure to accurately read and interpret the test results
  • Failure to listen to the patient’s concerns and address them accordingly
  • Failure to prescribe the correct course of treatment
  • Losing or misplacing a patient’s medical records

This list is by no means exhaustive, and if you have been let down by a medical professional, and it has led to your ocular cancer worsening, meaning more intense and invasive treatment, or even becoming incurable, we can help you to seek justice.

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Contact us

Please get in touch with one of our specialist medical negligence lawyers if you consider that you may have an Eye Cancer Negligence Claim.

At Lanyon Bowdler, we take pride in being a friendly and approachable law firm, so please get in touch if you or a loved one have been affected by a late or missed diagnosis, or incorrect treatment. Our team will be happy to talk you through the process of filing a compensation claim. There is no obligation to you for any charges for our initial assessment.

By choosing Lanyon Bowdler for any form of Medical Negligence Claim, you can rest assured that you have the best legal expertise on your team. Lanyon Bowdler’s Medical Negligence team is widely acclaimed and recognised as one of the best clinical negligence departments in the country. We are committed to providing exceptional levels of client care and will work closely and considerately with you to help find the best outcomes and help to get your life back on track.

We have offices in Shrewsbury, Bromyard, Conwy, Hereford, Ludlow, Oswestry, and Telford, so are able to act for clients all over Shropshire, Herefordshire, Mid and North Wales and across the Midlands (including Wolverhampton & Birmingham). As a leading full-service law firm, we can represent you wherever you live in England or Wales.

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Beth Heath
Beth Heath
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Medical Negligence
Emma Broomfield
Emma Broomfield
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Medical Negligence
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Laura Weir
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Medical Negligence
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Personal Injury | Medical Negligence
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Bryn Auger
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Rebecca Asquith
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Medical Negligence
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Martin Hood
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Ola Muras
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Medical Negligence
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Natasha Gibbons
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Georgia Bennett
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Amy Bills
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Misdiagnosis of Breast Cancer

In June 2001, the claimant (C), on the advice of a practice nurse, consulted the defendant GP (D) about her left breast....
Beth Heath • 26 Feb 2024
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Delay in Diagnosis of Tumour

A split trial was ordered. Breach of duty and particularly the central issue of whether the Radiologist had acted neglig...
Beth Heath • 26 Feb 2024
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Delay in Diagnosis of Bowel Cancer Leading to Shortened Life Expectancy

Mrs G had attended her GP with abdominal pain and bowel related symptoms. Blood results also showed low iron levels....
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Delay in Detection of Cervical Cancer

The Consultant failed to heed the advice of the Pathologist, suspicious of the findings of the biopsy and unhappy with t...
Beth Heath • 26 Feb 2024
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£375,000 for Father of Two After Hospital Blunder

Our client's wife died at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital in March 1998 after being diagnosed with cervical cancer five ye...
Beth Heath • 26 Feb 2024
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Misfiled Radiology Report Causes Catastrophic Harm

Mr L originally presented to Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH) in 2011 with suspected kidney stones....
18 Jul 2023
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Case Study
Lanyon Bowdler case study icon

Misdiagnosis of Breast Cancer

In June 2001, the claimant (C), on the advice of a practice nurse, consulted the defendant GP (D) about her left breast....
Beth Heath • 26 Feb 2024
Case Study
Lanyon Bowdler case study icon

Delay in Diagnosis of Tumour

A split trial was ordered. Breach of duty and particularly the central issue of whether the Radiologist had acted neglig...
Beth Heath • 26 Feb 2024
Case Study
Lanyon Bowdler case study icon

Delay in Diagnosis of Bowel Cancer Leading to Shortened Life Expectancy

Mrs G had attended her GP with abdominal pain and bowel related symptoms. Blood results also showed low iron levels....
Beth Heath • 26 Feb 2024
Case Study
Lanyon Bowdler case study icon

Delay in Detection of Cervical Cancer

The Consultant failed to heed the advice of the Pathologist, suspicious of the findings of the biopsy and unhappy with t...
Beth Heath • 26 Feb 2024
Case Study
Lanyon Bowdler case study icon

£375,000 for Father of Two After Hospital Blunder

Our client's wife died at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital in March 1998 after being diagnosed with cervical cancer five ye...
Beth Heath • 26 Feb 2024
Case Study
Close up of flower

Misfiled Radiology Report Causes Catastrophic Harm

Mr L originally presented to Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH) in 2011 with suspected kidney stones....
18 Jul 2023
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Cervical Screening Awareness Week

Cervical cancer is the most common form of cancer in women under 35 with two women per day, in the UK, dying from t...
Georgia Bennett • 19 Jun 2023
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