The incidence of eye cancer is increasing in Pakistan calling for early detection, diagnosis and proper treatment, a leading hospital said on Wednesday. Almost 30 percent of the eye cancer patients are children which is a growing threat that needs an urgent and full response, said Al-Shifa Trust Eye Hospital. Annually almost 2200 people are diagnosed with eye cancer and the number is growing therefore the trust has established a Cancer Eye Clinic to provide assistance to the needy, said Dr Professor Dr. Tayyab Afghani, Consultant and HOD of Orbit and Oculoplastic Department, Al-Shifa Trust Eye Hospital. He said that timely detection can save sight as the problem gets complicated by the passage of time that may cause vision loss, loss of the eye or may prove fatal. Eye problems should not be taken lightly and a doctor must be consulted without delay as the number of people with eye cancer is on the rise but patients are brought to hospitals only in the final stages of the disease, he added. Dr Afghani said that most of the children facing eye cancer belong to poor families living in remote areas and the facilities that can cure them are not near to them. He said that there are five specialists in the trust to provide assistance to the people suffering from eye cancer however, the programme must be expanded to provide relief to the maximum number of patients. Some tumours are incurable, while others may severely disfigure eyes requiring complex surgical procedures, he said, adding that many eye injuries due to accidents require plastic surgery but the eye problems due to cancer need more time and effort. “We were treating 200 patients per annum but after the establishment of a dedicated clinic, the number of surgeries will jump to 600 per year,” he informed.