The Finger iridectomy technique: small incision biopsy of anterior segment tumours

Br J Ophthalmol. 2005 Aug;89(8):946-9. doi: 10.1136/bjo.2004.062653.


Aims: To develop a minimally invasive, maximally effective method to biopsy anterior segment tumours.

Methods: A 25 gauge aspiration cutter (vitrector) was used to biopsy anterior segment tumours. The probe was introduced under sodium hyaluronate 1% and through a 1 mm incision. Aspiration (600 mm Hg) cutting (300 cpm) was performed to obtain specimens for cytology and histopathology.

Results: Diagnostic material was obtained in nine of 10 (90%) cases. Diagnoses included iris naevus, iris stroma, malignant melanoma, melanocytoma, epithelial inclusion cyst, and sarcoid granuloma. All corneal wounds were self sealing. One patient developed a transient postoperative increase in intraocular pressure. Within the follow up of this study, no patients suffered intraocular haemorrhage, infection, cataract or vision loss.

Conclusion: The Finger iridectomy technique was a minimally invasive and very effective biopsy technique. Aspiration cutting yielded relatively large pieces of tissue (and cells) used for cytopathological and histopathological evaluation. Small incision surgery allowed for rapid rehabilitation and no significant complications.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Anterior Eye Segment*
  • Biopsy / methods
  • Eye Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Iridectomy / methods*
  • Iris Neoplasms / pathology
  • Male
  • Melanoma / pathology
  • Middle Aged
  • Minimally Invasive Surgical Procedures / methods
  • Wound Healing