Eye cancer

When cells in or around the eye change and grow uncontrollably, the result is eye cancer — a general term for the many types of tumors that can develop. Each year, more than 2,700 people are diagnosed with some form of eye cancer.

What Is Eye Cancer?
Cancer is the result of a mutation that causes a buildup of extra cells in or around the eye. The extra cells can result in the formation of tumors, which may be malignant (cancerous) or benign (noncancerous). 

Eye cancer comes in four primary varieties:
  • Intraocular melanoma (also called melanoma of the eye or uveal melanoma) is the most common form of eye cancer in adults. It occurs when cells in the middle layer of the eye (called melanocytes) grow uncontrollably.
  • Intraocular lymphoma (also called lymphoma of the eye) is a non-Hodgkin lymphoma that originates in the cells of the eye.
  • Orbital and adnexal cancers are cancers that develop in the muscles, nerves and skin around the eyeball.
  • Retinoblastoma is the most common eye cancer in children, originating in the retina, which is the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eyeball.

How Can Houston Methodist Help
At Houston Methodist you will find the resources you need to screen for, diagnose and treat eye cancer with the most up-to-date technologies, the highest level of expertise and the most compassionate care.

Our continued commitment to research enables us to improve present and future cancer care. Learn more about our current cancer-related clinical trials.

Patient Story
Perhaps the best way to learn about our highly trained cancer specialists at Houston Methodist, the compassionate environment and innovative cancer treatments, is through our patients. Listen to Darrell's inspiring story to learn about his experience of being a patient with ocular melanoma at Houston Methodist.

A friend’s cataract surgery reminded Darrell that he needed an eye exam. His decision to have an eye exam was a wise one, because the retinal specialist in Alaska detected cancer and sent him to Houston Methodist to receive care for uveal melanoma, a rare eye cancer.  Darrell was fortunate to find the expertise he needed for his rare form of cancer at Houston Methodist.  


Our physicians specialize in managing eye cancer at the following convenient Houston Methodist Cancer Center locations.