A father was shocked after discovering what he thought was a detached retina was a rare form of cancer.

Transport planner Steve Marlow, 32, from Rickmansworth, had his eyes tested last year as he was having problems with his eyesight, but it was put down to using his computer too much at work.

But he later started experiencing flashing lights and his vision got worse.

After booking another appointment with an optician in August, Mr Marlow was told his retina was becoming detached.

The father who lives with his wife Joanne and six-year-old son was advised to go to Moorfields Eye Hospital in London. And after tests, it was found that he had a 8mm tumour in his left eye known as a ocular melanoma, a rare form of cancer.

Watford Observer:

Steve with the mask he had to wear for his proton beam therapy. Photo: Steve Marlow.

Mr Marlow underwent an operation to sew markers onto his eyeball for a Proton Beam Therapy in October.

This treatment is only available in the UK and USA, so Mr Marlow said he felt “incredibly lucky to have had access to this life saving treatment".

He added: “I was not expecting it, I thought it was just a detached retina.

“After my diagnosis I was in a bad way for a week and then had to go back for further tests.

“The worse part for me was when I had a MRI and CT scan and waiting for the results.

"It was just the not knowing which was scary.

“Because it was a rare form of cancer, I thought 'why of me out of all people?'

"I always thought, when I was a child, cancer was the one thing I did not want.”

Mr Marlow will have to go back to Moorsfield Hospital in January for injections to help fix part of his vision as he no longer has peripheral sight in his left eye.

He said if the tumour grows, he will need to have his eye removed.

Mr Marlow is taking part in a cycling fundraiser for ocular melanoma charity, OcuMel UK, to help raise awareness for this form of cancer.

To donate go to: www.gofundme.com/f/steven039s-campaign-for-ocumel-uk