We surgically remove scores of tumours and growths from around the eye.We did not think Naga’s teratoma would be any different. Medical literature showed us that there were 52 cases of the same type of tumour reportedworldwide,” explained Dr M Subhashini, professor of ophthalmology, Madras Medical College.
However, when they sliced the cyst out of the young girl’s eye socket, they found two fully grown, well-formed teeth inside the tumour!
“This is a rarity. We did not expect to find two fully grown teeth in the patient’s eye,” she said.
Nagapooshnam, from a village in Nellore, was referred to the hospital after she started having vision problems — the growth near her eye was ignored all through her childhood.
“Teratomas are usually just embryonic tissues that grow in the attempt to form an organ. They can grow in any part of the body, but teratomas in the eye socket are not very common,” explained Dr K. Vasantha, director of the hospital. Most teratomas are benign, but some can become malignant.
“As the tumour was quite a large one, it had pushed the eye ball up, so much so that only a small part of her eye ball was visible when she came here.
There was nothing wrong with the eye, but her vision had deteriorated because the eye ball had not been used for a long time; she had developed lazy eye syndrome,” explained Dr Subhashini.
The surgery was tricky as the tumour had grown very close to the retina, but the patient recovered well and is now fit for discharge, her vision regained.