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Retinoblastoma is the most common eye tumour in children.

It originates from the developing retina and usually presents in patients under 3 years of age. While the retinoblastoma cure rate is higher than 90%, traditionally patients with advanced intraocular disease tended to require enucleation (surgical removal) of the affected eye, despite conservative treatments. We apply treatments adapted to the characteristics of each patient and we are referring in¡ the application of our therapies. Our cure rate is over 95%.

Treatment of retinoblastoma in Spain

SJD Barcelona Children's Hospital has led the way in Europe in introducing intra-arterial chemotherapy, which applies localised chemotherapy to the tumour and preserves the eye affected by the disease.

Intra-arterial chemotherapy consists of inserting a catheter into an artery in the child's groin and then advancing it towards an artery in the eye to administer chemotherapy to the tumour. This technique allows chemotherapeutic agents to better reach the tumour and makes it possible to reduce the dose of chemotherapy that the body receives. In this way, adverse effects are reduced and patient and family quality of life is improved.

At SJD Barcelona Children's Hospital, we take a multidisciplinary approach to disease involving the best ophthalmologists with expertise in the retina, radiotherapists and oncologists.


The eye preservation rate in advanced stages of retinoblastoma is 80%.


We have two clinical trials in progress to treat retinoblastoma:

  • Clinical trial with VCN-01 oncolytic virus, the only one if its kind in the world, for patients with retinoblastoma who do not respond to conventional treatment.
  • Ongoing research with the ICFO (Institute of Photonic Sciences) for the application of confocal microscopy and other imaging techniques to improve the diagnosis of retinoblastoma.


Douglas tripped over things before, I had to guide him, not anymore. He goes to the park, plays and there is no need to give him a hand
Katherine, mother of Douglas, patient with retinoblastoma
In this video, Jukeiver’s father explains to us his experience at our hospital, and Dr Jaume Catalá tells us what treatment he administered to this patient.

The SJD Barcelona Children's Hospital's Oncology and Haematology Department

The SJD Barcelona Children's Hospital's Oncology and Haematology Department is the national reference centre of for the treatment of developmental cancer and an international reference centre for determined types of tumours.