Purpose: To evaluate the observed and relative survival of patients diagnosed with a malignant melanoma in the ocular region in Denmark during the period 1943-97.
Methods: The study included 2,504 patients (1,292 men and 1,212 women) diagnosed with a melanoma in the ocular region, of which 2,434 cases could be topographically subclassified into 2,178 in the choroid/ciliary body, 141 in the iris, and 115 in the conjunctiva. The patients were followed through 2002 and the observed survival proportions and relative survival ratios were estimated.
Results: For the total ocular region and the choroid/ciliary body, the observed survival did not vary statistically significantly with the year of diagnosis. A statistically insignificant higher observed survival for women than men was found for tumors in the ocular region and the subgroups choroid/ciliary body, iris, and conjunctiva. During the 55-year study period, the 5- and 10-year relative survival remained stable for the ocular region for men at 67% and 57% and for women at 71% and 60%, respectively, and stable for the choroid/ciliary body for men at 66% and 55% and for women at 69% and 57%, respectively. The 5- and 10-year relative survival for the iris was for men 90% and 85% and for women 99% and 101%, respectively, and for the conjunctiva for men 83% and 70% and for women 93% and 82%, respectively.
Conclusion: The observed and relative survival of patients diagnosed with a melanoma in the ocular region and choroid/ciliary body in Denmark during the period 1943-97 and followed through 2002 has remained stable. The highest observed and relative survival was found for iris melanomas, the lowest for choroid/ciliary body melanomas, and intermediate for conjunctival melanomas.