Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU Massey Cancer Center

Treatment for retinoblastoma

Specific treatment for retinoblastoma will be determined by your child’s physician based on:

  • Your child’s age, health and medical history.
  • Extent of the disease. 
  • Your child’s tolerance for specific medications, procedures or therapies.
  • Expectations for the course of the disease.
  • Your opinion or preference.

The primary goal of treatment is to remove the tumor and prevent metastasis (spreading) of the cancer to other parts of the body.

Treatment may include one or more of the following methods:

  • Surgery.
  • Enucleation – removal of part or all of the eye or eyes involved with the tumor. 
  • Chemotherapy. 
  • Radiation therapy.
  • Phototherapy – uses light to destroy the blood vessels that supply the tumor.
  • Cryotherapy – uses a freezing process to destroy the tumor.
  • Fitting and training for a prosthesis.
  • Blind or decreased vision adaptation training. 
  • Supportive care – for the side effects of treatment. 
  • Antibiotics – to prevent/treat infection.