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Uveal tumour resection
  1. Devron H Chara,
  2. Theodore Millerb,
  3. J Brooks Crawfordb
  1. aThe Tumori Eye Foundation, CPMC Davies, Stanford University, CA, USA, bUniversity of California, San Francisco, USA
  1. Devron H Char, MD, California Pacific Medical Center, Davies Campus, 45 Castro Street, Suite 309, San Francisco, CA 94114, USAdevron{at}


AIM To review the ocular retention rates, visual results, and metastases in uveal tumours managed with eye wall resection techniques.

METHODS This was a retrospective analysis of consecutive local uveal tumour resections performed by a single surgeon. All enucleation specimens were reviewed by one author. Both parametric and non-parametric analysis of data were performed.

RESULTS 138 eyes were scheduled for eye wall resection surgery. The mean age was 52 years (range 11–86 years). Tumours involved predominantly the iris in 14 cases, iris-ciliary body in 57, ciliary body alone in 18 patients, and in 49 cases the choroid was involved (ciliochoroidal, iris-ciliary body-choroid, or choroid). 125 eyes harboured melanomas; posterior tumours were more likely to have epithelioid cells (p<0.05). The mean follow up was 6 years. The mean clock hours in iris and iris-ciliary body tumours was 3.5. In tumours that involved the choroid the mean largest diameter was 12.9 mm and the mean thickness 8.5 mm. 105 of 138 (76%) eyes were retained. Histological assessment of surgical margins did not correlate evidence of tumour in enucleated eyes or metastatic disease. Surgical margins of more anterior tumours were more likely to be clear on histological evaluation (p<0.05). Approximately 53% of retained eyes had a final visual acuity of ⩾20/40; visual results were significantly better in more anteriorly located tumours (p<0.05). All retained iris tumour cases had ⩾20/40 final visual acuity. In tumours that involved the choroid nine of 31 retained eyes kept that level of visual acuity. Eight patients developed metastases; all metastatic events developed in patients with tumours that involved the choroid, and seven of eight were mixed cell melanomas.

CONCLUSIONS 76% of eyes were retained and 53% of these had a final visual acuity of ⩾20/40. Only 7% of uveal melanoma patients developed metastatic disease with a mean follow up of 6 years. Survival did not appear to be compromised with eye wall resection and in very thick, more posterior melanomas it appeared that ocular retention and visual results were better than with radiation alone.

  • uveal tumour
  • tumour resection

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