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Ophthalmic Surg Lasers. 2002 Sep-Oct;33(5):416-20.

Orbital melanoma metastatic from contralateral choroid: management by complete surgical resection.

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  • 1Oncology Service, Wills Eye Hospital, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107, USA.


We discuss a clinicopathologic correlation of orbital metastasis from a contralateral choroidal melanoma wherein the orbital tumor was removed completely by surgical resection. In October 1982, a 29-year-old woman was treated with cobalt-60 plaque radiotherapy for a choroidal melanoma in her right eye. The tumor responded well but recurred after 9 years, necessitating enucleation. In August 1999, 17 years after initial presentation, metastatic melanoma to liver, lung, and brain were found and the patient had a favorable response to chemotherapy and brain irradiation. Five months later, in November 2000, an enlarging orbital mass was documented to be compressing the left optic nerve. Complete surgical removal of the tumor was achieved by a superotemporal orbitotomy. Histopathologically, the tumor was a malignant melanoma with features similar to the choroidal tumor. The contralateral orbit can be the site of late metastasis from choroidal melanoma. In rare instances, an orbital metastasis can be completely removed surgically without subjecting the patient to orbital irradiation.

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