Eyelid skin cancers, including basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma, respond well to surgery and follow-up care when diagnosed and treated early. Watch for these early warning signs and contact an ophthalmologist if you experience any of these symptoms:
- A lump or bump that bleeds or does not disappear
- Persistent red eye or eyelid inflammation that does not respond to medication
- New flat or elevated pigmented lesions with irregular borders and growth
- Unexplained loss of eyelashes
UV exposure can also cause damage inside the eye. For more information, read “Protecting Your Eyes: Everyday Steps to Sun Safety” and "Are my eyes at risk for sun damage?" by Dr. Rene S. Rodriguez-Sains of Marshall Eye Surgeons.
Tumors of the Eye
Tumors of the eyelid may be benign cysts, inflammation or malignant skin cancers. The most common type of eyelid cancer is basal cell carcinoma. Most basal cell carcinomas can be removed with surgery. If left untreated, these tumors can grow around the eye and into the orbit, sinuses and brain. A simple biopsy can determine if an eyelid tumor is malignant. Malignant tumors are completely removed and the eyelid is repaired using plastic surgery techniques.