Eyelid Skin Cancer Prevention

Published: June 15, 2021

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Ultraviolet light is damaging not only to the eyes, but to the “thinnest and most sensitive skin on the body,” – the eyelid. Between 5 and 10% of all skin cancers are found on the eyelid. Approximately 90% of eyelid skin cancers are basal cell carcinomas. The remaining 10% are squamous cell and sebaceous gland carcinomas and malignant melanoma, all of which are more aggressive than basal cell.(1)

Factors increasing the risk of developing eyelid cancer include:

  • Sun exposure
  • Light skin and light-colored eyes
  • Age -- eyelid cancer is more common after age 50
  • Health history, including sunburns, some diseases, and a weakened immune system.(2)  

Symptoms may include: a bump that is smooth, pearly, or firm and red; a flat, flesh-colored lesion; a scaly patch; or a loss of eyelashes. Often Mohs microsurgery is used for eyelid skin cancer, but treatment may also include radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and cryotherapy.(1)

For prevention of eyelid skin cancer, The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends wearing sunglasses year-round, with sunglasses that block 99 to 100% of both UVA and UVB light. And don’t let a cloudy day fool you – the sun’s rays can pass through clouds and haze. A hat with a three-inch brim can block close to half of all UV rays. Finally, “Take extra care near water, snow, and sand: 80% or more of the sun’s rays reflect off of these surfaces, so they hit your eyes and skin a second time.”(3)

As the healthcare market evolves, hospital pharmacies, surgery centers, and doctor’s offices face multiple challenges and constant financial pressure to provide safe, reliable, and affordable compounded pharmaceuticals.  Edge Pharma offers a portfolio of standard products for dermatologistsHowever, if your practice requires something else our scientists and pharmacists are available to discuss custom compounded medications as well.

(1) Columbia University Department of Ophthalmology, https://www.columbiaeye.org/. Retrieved June 9, 2021.
(2) All About Vision, https://www.allaboutvision.com/. Retrieved June 9, 2021.
(3) Skin Cancer Foundation, https://www.skincancer.org/. (Retrieved June 9, 2021)