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Ocular melanoma-when you have seen one, you have not seen them all: a clinical outcome study from the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) database (1973–2012)

Authors Mahendraraj K, Shrestha S, Lau CSM, Chamberlain RS

Received 24 August 2016

Accepted for publication 20 October 2016

Published 5 January 2017 Volume 2017:11 Pages 153—160

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/OPTH.S120530

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Colin Mak

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser

Krishnaraj Mahendraraj,1 Sneha Shrestha,1 Christine SM Lau,1,2 Ronald S Chamberlain1–4

1Department of Surgery, Saint Barnabas Medical Center, Livingston, NJ, USA; 2Saint George’s University School of Medicine, Grenada, West Indies; 3Department of Surgery, Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center, Gilbert, AZ, USA; 4Department of Surgery, Rutgers University, New Jersey Medical School, Newark, NJ, USA

Background: Ocular melanoma (OM) comprises <5% of all melanomas. Uveal melanoma (UM) is the most common subtype of OM, while conjunctival melanoma (CM) is rare and differs significantly from UM. The purpose of this study is to evaluate a large cohort of OM patients to differentiate demographic, pathologic, and clinical factors between these two neoplasms, which may affect treatment and outcomes.
Methods: The Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database (1973–2012) was used to extract demographic and clinical data on 8,165 OM patients (92.1% UM and 7.9% CM).
Results: Both CM and UM were most prevalent among Caucasian males in the seventh decade of life. UM patients presented more often with localized disease (90.9% vs 81.2, P<0.01). Surgery (42.8%), radiation (43.0%), or combined surgery and radiation (7.0%) were used in the treatment of UM, while CM was treated almost exclusively with surgery (88.7%). Mean overall survival was longer (15.4 vs 14.6 years; P<0.01) and mortality rates were lower in patients (38.8% vs 46.1%; P<0.01) with CM.
Conclusion: Despite presenting with more advanced disease than UM, CM is associated with an increased overall survival. Surgery is the primary therapy for CM, whereas radiotherapy is the primary therapy for UM and is associated with prolonged survival.

Keywords:
ocular melanoma, uveal melanoma, conjunctival melanoma, SEER

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