Purpose: Eyes with posterior choroidal melanomas more than 9 mm in thickness frequently are enucleated because of the potential complications of radiotherapy. The aim of this study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of internal resection of these tumors. Methods: Twenty-five consecutive patients with high posterior choroidal melanomas with a diameter less than 15 mm and a thickness greater than 9 mm were treated. If the retina was not invaded by the tumor, a vitrectomy was performed, followed by posterior hyaloid dissection, 120° anterior retinotomy, endophotocoagulation 2 mm past the tumor margin, melanoma removal with the vitrectomy probe, retinal reattachment with liquid perfluorocarbon and air, and silicone oil exchange. If the tumor invaded the retina, the laser was applied through the retina, and the retina and tumor were removed together. Results: The mean patient age was 46.6 years. The tumor thicknesses ranged from 9.1 to 12.8 mm, and the tumor diameter ranged from 8.9 to 14.8 mm. The mean preoperative visual acuity was 20/60. In 11 patients, the tumor had invaded the retina. We removed the entire tumor from all 25 eyes. The main postoperative complications were cataract (40%), retinal detachment (16%), macular traction (16%), and epiretinal macular proliferation (8%). The mean postoperative visual acuity was 20/100. No tumors recurred, and there was no evidence of metastasis. The follow-up ranged from 12 to 72 months. Conclusions: These data suggest that internal resection of high posterior melanomas may conserve ocular and functional vision and does not seem to increase the risk of metastatic disease. Longer follow-up is necessary to establish the safety of the procedure.
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2001|
- Choroidal melanoma
- Transvitreal resection
- Uveal melanoma
- Vitreoretinal surgery