[Retinoblastoma--hereditary eye cancer in children]

Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 2004 Jan 22;124(2):183-5.
[Article in Norwegian]


Background: Retinoblastoma is a malignant tumour of the retina that occurs in early childhood. The aim of this paper is to give an updated review of the disease.

Material and methods: A review is given based on literature published over the last few years and on the authors' own experience.

Results: The yearly incidence of retinoblastoma is approximately one per 14 000 live births, which gives four new cases of retinoblastoma per year in Norway. The only known risk factor is heritage. Symptoms of retinoblastoma are strabismus, reduced visual acuity and red eye, but the absolutely most important sign is leukokoria (white pupillary reflex). Important diagnostic tools are ophthalmoscopy, ultrasonography, CT and MRI. The goal of treatment is to destroy all tumour tissue, but not the surrounding tissue. Treatment options are enucleation, chemotherapy, external beam radiation, radioactive isotope plaques, cryotherapy, photocoagulation, or a combination of these depending upon the size and location of the tumour.

Interpretation: The overall results in the treatment of retinoblastoma are favourable and have improved over the last few years because of better treatment modalities. The survival rate is approximately 95%. It is important that physicians bear in mind the signs of retinoblastoma and especially the alarming sign of leukokoria and acute strabismus in a child.

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Prognosis
  • Retinal Neoplasms* / diagnosis
  • Retinal Neoplasms* / genetics
  • Retinal Neoplasms* / therapy
  • Retinoblastoma* / diagnosis
  • Retinoblastoma* / genetics
  • Retinoblastoma* / therapy