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April 2006

Observed Growth in Small Melanocytic Choroidal Tumors

Arch Ophthalmol. 2006;124(4):607-608. doi:10.1001/archopht.124.4.607-b

The December 2004 issue of the ARCHIVES contained a graphic, decidedly provocative clinicopathologic report by Elner et al1 entitled “Histopathology of Documented Growth in Small Melanocytic Choroidal Tumors.” Elner and colleagues described 2 choroidal melanocytic tumors that became symptomatic, developed orange pigment, and showed documented growth. Both patients elected to have the eye removed. By histopathologic analysis, case 1 was diagnosed as an epithelioid-type malignant melanoma and case 2 as a benign nevus. Elner and colleagues concluded that documented growth is not an unequivocal indicator of melanoma for small melanocytic growth. I will certainly not argue with their conclusion, but they have not convinced me that the second tumor was a benign nevus.

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