Autofluorescence of choroidal melanoma in 51 cases

C. L. Shields, C. Bianciotto, C. Pirondini, M. A. Materin, S. A. Harmon, J. A. Shields

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Aim: To describe the autofluorescence features of choroidal melanoma. Design: Non-comparative case series. Participants: 51 consecutive patients. Methods: Standard fundus photography and autofluorescence photography (580 nm excitation, 695 nm barrier filter) were performed on all patients. Clinical features were correlated with autofluorescence features. Main outcome measure: Autofluorescence features of choroidal melanoma and overlying retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Results: The mean patient age was 59 years. The choroidal melanoma was a mean of 3.6 mm from the optic disc and 2.6 mm from the foveola. The mean tumour basal dimension was 11 mm and the mean tumour thickness was 4 mm. The choroidal melanoma showed intrinsic hypoautofluorescence (39%), isoautofluorescence (6%) and hyperautofluorescence (55%). Slightly increased hyperautofluorescence of the melanoma was found in pigmented tumours (versus non-pigmented), those with greater thickness and basal dimensions, and those with overlying disrupted RPE. Related RPE hyperplasia and atrophy showed hypoautofluorescence, drusen, RPE detachment and subretinal fluid showed slight hyperautofluorescence, and orange pigment displayed the brightest hyperautofluorescence. Conclusions: Choroidal melanoma generally shows slight intrinsic hyperautofluorescence and the brightness increases with pigmented tumours, larger tumours, and those associated with disrupted RPE. Overlying orange pigment shows remarkably bright hyperautofluorescence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)617-622
Number of pages6
JournalBritish Journal of Ophthalmology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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