[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
October 1964

Lesions Mistaken for Malignant Melanoma of the Posterior Uvea: A Clinicopathologic Analysis of 100 Cases With Ophthalmoscopically Visible Lesions

Author Affiliations

Washington, DC
Former Special Fellow in Ophthalmic Pathology at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, sponsored by the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Blindness, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md.; From the files of the Registry of Ophthalmic Pathology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, and the Veterans Administration Central Laboratory for Anatomic Pathology and Research, AFIP. The files of the AFIP include case materials from military, Veterans Administration, and civilian sources.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1964;72(4):463-469. doi:10.1001/archopht.1964.00970020463004

Enucleation of an eye that is erroneously thought to harbor a malignant melanoma is, in many cases, a tragic loss for the patient. History tends to repeat itself, and a lesion that has confused one ophthalmologist in the past is likely to confuse others in the future. A thoughtful analysis of eyes that have been enucleated because of such erroneous diagnoses should be helpful in reducing the frequency of these misfortunes in the future.

Several attempts at such an analysis have been made in the past.1-5 To obtain meaningful information, however, cases selected for this type of study must meet two major criteria: (1) the lesion must have been ophthalmoscopically visible, and (2) suspicion that the ophthalmoscopically visible lesion was due to a malignant melanoma must have been so great that enucleation was the result.

The first criterion stems from the fact that many eyes that are clinically blind