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UK surgeons use robot to remove tumour next to eye

Clinicians from Moorfields Eye Hospital and Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust undertook the pioneering procedure

Irene and Jean-Pierre
Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust

Surgeons from Moorfields Eye Hospital and Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust have successfully removed a tumour from the inner corner of a patient’s right eye using robotic-assisted orbital surgery.

Irene Milton, 85, had a recurrent basal cell carcinoma in the inner corner of her right eye.

Conventional methods of treating Milton would have involved removing the eye and undergoing six months of radiotherapy which would have left her blind.

However, following the two-hour robotic-assisted surgery in March, Milton’s tumour was removed while the nerves and function of her eye was preserved. She will not require radiotherapy.

Guy’s and St Thomas’ consultant head and neck surgeon, Jean-Pierre Jeannon, highlighted that it is the first time in the world that a robot has been used in this way for orbital surgery.

“We’re delighted for Irene that her surgery went so well. Her tumour is gone and she has kept her sight,” he said.

Milton shared her pleasure with the outcome of the operation.

“It’s such a relief, I’m over the moon. It’s nice to know that you’re never too old to have anything done, especially pioneering surgery,” she said.