Purpose: To investigate racial/ethnic differences in the development of uveal malignant melanoma in a large population-based study.
Design: Observational cross-sectional study.
Methods: With the 1992 to 2000 data that was provided by the National Cancer Institute's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program, we calculated age-adjusted incidence rates of uveal melanoma in various racial/ethnic groups (black, Asian and Pacific Islander, Hispanic, and non-Hispanic white). In addition, we calculated the standard incidence ratio (risk ratio) and 95% confidence interval to describe the differences within these racial/ethnic groups.
Results: From 1992 to 2000, there were a total of 1352 uveal melanomas that were diagnosed in 11 Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results registries with known racial/ethnic groups. The annual age-adjusted incidence (per million population) of uveal melanoma was 0.31 (black), 0.38 (Asian), 1.67 (Hispanic), and 6.02 (non-Hispanic white). The difference in the incidence of uveal melanoma between each racial/ethnic group was highly statistically significant, with the exception of the black versus the Asian population in which there was no statistically significant difference.
Conclusion: The relative risk of uveal melanoma was 1.2 for Asian and Pacific Islander patients, 5.4 for Hispanic patients, and 19.2 for non-Hispanic white patients as compared with the black patients. If the non-Hispanic white population and the Hispanic population were combined, then the overall white:black ratio was 18:1.