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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 26  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 69-79

Contemporary management of retinoblastoma in the context of a low-resource country


1 Department of Ophthalmology (Paediatric, Strabismus and Oncology Services), University of Ilorin, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, Ilorin, Kwara, Nigeria
2 Azienda Ospedaliera di Padova, Italy; Paediatric Oncology-Great Ormond Street (GOS) Hospital, London, UK
3 Retinoblastoma Unit, Royal London Hospital, Barts Health NHS Trust; Department of Paediatrics, Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Dupe S Ademola-Popoola
Department of Ophthalmology (Paediatric, Strabismus and Oncology Services), University of Ilorin, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, GPO Box: 4718, 240001, Ilorin, Kwara
Nigeria
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/npmj.npmj_21_19

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Retinoblastoma (RB) is the most common ocular cancer, and it typically presents before the age of 5 years in over 90% of cases. In high resource countries, RB patients tend to survive and retain their sight. This is not the case in low-resource countries because of late presentation and delayed intervention arising mostly from sociocultural and socioeconomic challenges. RB has no gender or racial predilection; the incidence is estimated as 1:16,000–1:18,000 live-births or 11/1 million children under 5 years. Most of the world's RB cases are found in Asia and Africa while most RB treatment centres are in America and Europe. RB is easy to detect by caregivers as a glowing white 'cat eye reflex' at night or when captured on camera. Health workers at primary care level can detect RB in early life if red reflex test and/or squint (Hirschberg) tests are deployed as part of wellness checks done especially during routine immunisation and well-baby clinics in the first 24 months of life. In most cases of RB, biopsies for histological confirmation are not required for diagnosis and treatment decisions to be made. Clinical information, ophthalmic evaluation and imaging modalities are typically used. There have been significant changes in the management of RB using various treatment modalities such as enucleation with orbital implant, use of chemotherapy delivered through intravenous, intravitreal, periocular and intra-arterial routes and targeted treatment with laser, cryotherapy and brachytherapy. Algorithm for management and development of the national RB program within the context of a low-resource country is presented from review of data extracted from Mendeley library, PubMed library, Google Scholar and One Network; full-text articles were mostly retrieved through the American Academy of Ophthalmology.


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