VITRECTOMY-ASSISTED BIOPSY FOR MOLECULAR PROGNOSTICATION OF CHOROIDAL MELANOMA 2 MM OR LESS IN THICKNESS WITH A 27-GAUGE CUTTER

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Abstract

Purpose:

Fine-needle aspiration biopsy of small choroidal melanomas 2 mm or less in thickness may be associated with a low biopsy yield. This report describes our center's experience using the 27-gauge vitreous cutter to perform tumor sampling in these small melanomas.

Methods:

This was a retrospective analysis of all patients who underwent a 27-gauge vitreous cutter biopsy for molecular prognostication at the time of iodine-125 plaque placement for local treatment of choroidal melanoma ≤2.0 mm in height.

Results:

Seventeen consecutive patients with a mean baseline tumor height of 1.67 mm (range, 1.31–2.03 mm) and median follow-up time of 7.0 months (range, 3.3–19.5 months) were included. The 27-gauge cutter biopsy yielded sufficient material for multiplex-ligation probe amplification (MLPA) or gene expression profiling (GEP) in 17/17 (100%) patients. Complications were limited to focal vitreous hemorrhage in 13/17 patients and diffuse vitreous hemorrhage in 1/17 patients, with no instance of retinal detachment or nonclearing vitreous hemorrhage.

Conclusion:

Tumor sampling of small choroidal melanoma with a 27-gauge vitreous cutter is safe and offers excellent biopsy yield for molecular prognostication when cancer prognosis is desired by patients.

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