What is an Eyelid tumor?

An 'eyelid tumor' is a mass arising from the eyelid.  While any eyelid mass can be loosely called as a 'tumor', it can either be non-cancerous (benign) or a cancerous one.


Is it a Cancer?                                                                                                                  The biggest worry for every patient is to wonder if the eyelid nodule is cancerous. Most eyelid tumors are benign (non-cancerous), painless, and slow growing masses.They gradually increase in size, and become a cosmetic concern.

Cancerous eyelid mass is usually fast growing, and more common in the elderly. The oculoplastic surgeon can determine whether its cancerous by its duration, and appearance. Hence, consulting your oculoplastic surgeon is very important.

Treatment                                                                                                             Treatment of any eyelid mass depends upon whether it suspected to be benign or cancerous. Benign tumors are removed completely, either by shave biopsy or by minimally invasive techniques. Care is taken to preserve eyelid function and appearance. For suspected cancerous nodule of the eyelid,  pathology confirmation is the best way to ensure complete removal and to know the exact diagnosis. Reconstruction of the eyelid after removal of the mass is dependent on the size and location of the defect. Various reconstruction options are available.

Recovery                                                                                                                       Surgery for eyelid tumors vary in their complexity and duration based on the location and extent of the tumor. Most eyelid surgeries are performed under local anasesthesia as a day-care procedure. Surgery for cancerous growth can be more complicated, and requires general anaesthesia. Small tumors can be removed within an hour, whereas large tumors require longer surgeries. Cancer surgeries may require skin graft, or eyelid flap techniques for reconstruction. Stitches if any, are removed in 7-10 days. Some proecedures are also done in stages, separated by a few weeks. Most patients are back to light work within a week or two. Minimal bruising may persist for 2-3 weeks.
Removal of eyelid tumors is performed by the minimally invasive techniques. It involves specialized care since the function of the eye has to be preserved while providing the best cosmetic result.

Insurance                                                                                                                       Health insurance will cover the costs of tumor/cancer surgery.