Author(s): Jovanovic P, Mihajlovic M, DjordjevicJocic J, Vlajkovic S, Cekic S,
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Abstract Ocular melanoma is the second most common type of melanoma after cutaneous and the most common primary intraocular malignant tumor in adults. Large majority of ocular melanomas originate from uvea, while conjunctival melanomas are far less frequent. Incidence of uveal melanoma has remained stable over last three decades. Diagnosis is in most cases established by clinical examination with great accuracy. Local treatment of uveal melanoma has improved, with increased use of conservative methods and preservation of the eye, but survival rates have remained unchanged. Recent advances in cytogenetics and genetics enhanced prognostication and enabled to determine tumors with high metastatic potential. However, due to lack of effective systemic therapy, prognosis of patients with metastasis remains poor and metastatic disease remains the leading cause of death among patients with uveal melanoma. Conjunctival melanoma is rare, but its incidence is increasing. It mostly occurs among white adults. In majority of cases it originates from preceding primary acquired melanosis. Current standard treatment for conjunctival melanoma is wide local excision with adjuvant therapy, including brachytherapy, cryotherapy and topical application of chemotherapeutic agent. Rarity of this tumor limits conduction of controlled trials to define the best treatment modality. As well as for uveal melanoma, prognosis of patients with metastasis is poor because there is no effective systemic therapy. Better understanding of underlying genetic and molecular abnormalities implicated in development and progression of ocular melanomas provides a great opportunity for development of targeted therapy, which will hopefully improve prognosis of patients with metastatic disease.
This article was published in Int J Clin Exp Pathol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Ophthalmology