A routine visit to an optician proved to be a matter of life and death for a Peterborough man after it revealed a tumour in his eye.

David Nicholson, of Irving Burgess Close, Whittlesey, has thanked staff at the city’s Bridge Street branch of Specsavers for helping to save his life.

Cancerous melanoma detected

Mr Nicholson, a retired mechanic who has worked with such rally legends as Colin McRae, was in the branch for his annual check-up when optometrist Chintu Patel spotted areas of pigmentation on the retina of his left eye using the store’s digital retinal camera.

He was immediately referred to his GP, who in turn referred him to Peterborough City Hospital for more tests.

Mr Nicholson was diagnosed with a cancerous melanoma and two weeks later he had a metal plate inserted at the back of his eye to help shrink the tumour.

Grateful to Specsavers for helping to save my life

The father-of-two said: 'I am so grateful to Specsavers for noticing the irregularity in my eye test. I was told at the hospital that I was extremely lucky as I could have been seen by 10 different opticians and they may not have detected this growth. I’m really grateful to Specsavers for helping to save my life.'

Importance of getting regular eye tests

The abnormality in Mr Nicholson’s eye was revealed in pictures Mr Patel took using the store’s digital retinal camera. Mr Patel said: 'As Mr Nicholson had attended a previous sight test and as no mention of pigmentation was found on the record, I thought it was important to refer him to the hospital for further tests.

I’m so glad that I did this and he was able to receive treatment before it was too late.  It really goes to shows the importance of getting regular eye tests.'

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