Immunoscintigraphy (IS) was performed on 101 patients with space occupying intraocular lesions including choroidal melanomas (85), choroidal naevi (11), non-melanoma metastases (three), and other melanoma simulating lesions (two). Scintigraphic images with conventional and emission computer tomography techniques were obtained after the intravenous injection of 99mTc-labelled F(ab')2 fragments of monoclonal antibody (MoAb) 225.28S directed against the high molecular weight-melanoma associated antigen (HMW-MAA). Immunohistochemistry was performed on sections of four out of 10 melanoma-containing eyes to confirm MoAb binding. IS demonstrated positive scans in 66 out of 85 choroidal melanomas, offering a sensitivity of 78%. Sensitivity was dependent on the lesion size. True negative results were obtained in 15 out of 16 non-melanoma lesions (specificity 94%). False positive antibody accumulation was found in one patient with a post-traumatic subretinal haemorrhage. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated positive MoAb 225.28S binding in all melanoma sections. In summary IS offered substantial sensitivity and specificity in the differentiation of intraocular lesions, particularly choroidal melanomas, naevi, and metastases. In combination with other diagnostic procedures such as ultrasound echography and fluorescein angiography IS proved to be a valuable method in the diagnosis of choroidal melanoma.
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