Sameh Razzouk
Sameh Razzouk, 33, a father-of-one, undergoes a a complicated surgery to save his eye in Abu Dhabi Image Credit: Supplied

Abu Dhabi: A Syrian expat suffering with a large tumour behind his eye has had the cancerous growth successfully removed following a complex procedure at an hosptial in Abu Dhabi.

Sameh Razzouk, 33, a father-of-one, had been suffering with redness in his eyes for over a year, only to be prescribed eyedrops every time he visited a doctor. After a year of looking for a resolution, an ophthalmologist finally performed a scan, which revealed a large growth behind Razzouk’s right eye.

Shocking diagnosis

“I was bothered by the redness, but I never suspected that it could be a tumour. The diagnosis floored me, and I began searching for a surgeon to remove the growth. Unfortunately, many experts I approached said the location of the tumour made the surgery too risky,” Razzouk told Gulf News.

His search led him to Dr Habibullah Eatamadi, consultant ophthalmologist and Dr Ohood Al Mazrouie, Opthalmic specialist at the Sheikh Shakhbout Medical City in Abu Dhabi.

Surgical risks

“Dr Eatamadi performed a number of scans. He told me the risks of the procedure, which included losing vision in the right eye, as well as eyelid dropping. But he also assured me that the team would try its utmost, and call on the help of maxillofacial experts at the hospital,” Razzouk said.

By then, Razzouk, who works as a jeweller, had begun suffering debilitating headaches. And although his vision was still intact, his right eye had begun to bulge by more than a millimetre.

He consented to the surgery, which was supposed to take about five hours to remove a growth estimated to be about 3.5 centimetres in size. The actual procedure however took eight hours, as the tumour turned out to be bigger at 4.2 centimetres.


The surgical team, led by Dr Eatamadi, opened up Razzouk’s skull to remove the growth without damaging nerves in the area. The maxillofacial team, led by Dr Colin Mciver, consultant maxillofacial head and neck surgeon, provided access to the tumour using a temporal cutting of the bone or osteotomy, and the ophthalmology team removed the tumour. The surgery was deemed risky, especially as tumours in this location are rather rate.

No loss of vision

After the procedure, Razzouk was delighted to find that he had had no loss of vision.

“Dr Eatamadi was equally surprised and happy when I told him that I could still see with my right eye when the bandages were removed,” Razzouk said.

He was discharged five days after the procedure, and three months on, has had no vision loss.

“The success of this challenging surgery was the result of the extraordinary efforts undertaken by our multidisciplinary team. Our primary mission is to place the needs of our patients first, and provide the best care possible to them closer to home by making accessible a wide range of effective treatments right here in Abu Dhabi,” Dr Eatamadi said.

Looking forward

Razzouk is now able to live normally, and is looking forward to the arrival of a second child.

“I am so grateful to Allah and my doctors, who helped remove the tumour without damaging my vision. I can look forward to a fulfilled life with my family, and I am tremendously thankful for this blessing,” he said.