A dad from Rickmansworth who was having problems with his eyesight was left in shock after finding out what he was told was a detached retina, was actually a rare form of cancer.
Transport planner, Steve Marlow, 32, is now fundraising for OcuMel UK, the charity that helped him with his rare form of eye cancer, by putting together a charity bike ride.
Steve was having problems with his eyesight and went to the opticians as his vision out of his left eye was blurry.
The opticians told Steve it was down to him looking at his work computer screen too much.
Then a few weeks after the appointment, he started seeing flashing lights in the same eye.
Steve said: “I told my wife, but because the opticians had told me it wasn’t much to worry about, I didn’t think much of it.
“My wife didn’t want to leave it, so she booked an appointment at Vision Express in August and they thought it was a detached retina, so they advised me to go to Moorfields Eye Hospital the following Monday.
“When they ran a few tests, they showed I did have a detached retina however its cause was something far more sinister.
“The doctor told me I had an 8mm tumour known as a uveal/ocular melanoma, an extremely rare form of cancer.”
Steve underwent an operation to sew markers onto his eyeball to prepare for the Proton Beam Therapy at the Clatterbridge Cancer Centre he had on October 7 to October 11.
The treatment Steve had is currently only available in the UK and in the US, Steve said he felt “so incredibly lucky” to have had access to this life saving treatment.
On what the future holds for Steve, he said: “I will have liver scans every six months for the rest of my life at Mount Vernon Cancer Centre.
“Even if the treatment stops my eye cancer growing, it can travel to the liver, but I am determined to fight it every step of the way.”
After recovery, Steve was determined to do something for OcuMel UK, the charity that supported him through his journey.
OcuMel UK is a charity supporting those affected by ocular melanoma.
They aim to help patients and their families by providing accurate, up-to-date information and emotional support via their website, helpline and online forums.
Their vision is a world where ocular melanoma patients are given the information, support and treatment they need.
Steve has put together a team to cycle from Moorfields Eye Hospital in London to Clatterbridge Cancer Centre in the Wirral on March 28, 29 and 30, next year.
Steve said: “I’m sure like many people, myself included, you had never heard of this type of cancer as it is so rare, I’m still confused about myself.
“I want to take on this challenge to raise awareness of Ocular Melanoma and collect desperately needed funds for this amazing charity to help people like myself.
“Any help you can offer would mean so much to me, if you aren’t able to contribute financially, I completely understand, even a share on social media would be amazing.”
To donate, or to share Steve’s fundraiser click here.