Eye freckles are usually harmless, but they should be monitored by your optometrist to reduce the risk of possible complications. There are two types of eye freckles: One type is called nevi, which are similar to the moles found on your skin, and the other is iris freckles, which, as the name suggests, are found in the colored part of your eye.
What Causes Eye Freckles?
Freckles are formed when melanocytes—special cells that give your skin and your eyes their color—clump together instead of spreading out. Some people are born with nevi, while others develop them, usually in the iris, as they age. Researchers have yet to determine the exact causes of eye freckles, but two factors may play a role in their formation. One factor is your skin tone: Choroidal nevi or nevi located at the back of the eye are more common in people with lighter skin tones. The second factor is the amount of exposure to the sun; a study conducted in 2017 found that iris freckles are more common in people who spent more time in the sun.
Can Eye Freckles Complications?
Like most of the moles and freckles on your skin, eye freckles are usually harmless. However, there is a small chance that a freckle is a sign of eye melanoma. To monitor any changes or growth in the eye freckle, you should see your eye doctor for a computer vision exam every 6 to 12 months. They’ll take note of whether there’s been any change in the size, the shape, and elevation. Remember: Early detection is crucial to treating melanoma.
If the eye freckle needs to be removed, what are your options? Depending on the situation, the eye freckle can be removed either through local excision (using a small blade to remove the freckle) or argon laser photoablation (using a laser to remove tissue). To learn more about the possible options, you can consult your local optometrist.
Eyes on Norbeck offers a wide range of professional eye care services as well as prescription eyeglasses. In response to the coronavirus outbreak, we’ve taken additional steps to provide a safe environment for our patients. To schedule an appointment, call us at (301) 238-7199 or fill out this form. We serve homeowners in Rockville, MD, as well as the surrounding communities.