Differences in uveal melanomas between men and women from the British Isles

Eye (Lond). 2012 Feb;26(2):292-9. doi: 10.1038/eye.2011.272. Epub 2011 Nov 11.


Purpose: The purpose of this study is to compare uveal melanomas (UMs) in men and women.

Methods: The Liverpool Ocular Oncology Centre (LOOC) database was reviewed. Patients treated for UM at the LOOC between 1993 and 2010 were selected. Differences between sexes were identified using the χ (2)-test for categorical variables and the Mann-Whitney test for continuous variables.

Results: The 3380 patients comprised 1685 women and 1695 men. The tumours were considered clinically to have arisen in choroid in 89.5%, ciliary body in 5.3%, and iris in 5.2%. Tumours in women were less likely to originate in choroid (87.2 vs 91.7%; P<0.001) and showed more circumferential spread in ciliary body (P<0.001) and iris (P=0.003). Tumours in men were more likely to extend to within 3 mm of optic disc or fovea (46.3 vs 39.0%, P<0.001), showing more extensive optic-disc involvement (P<0.001). The median largest basal tumour diameter was 12.2 mm in men and 11.9 mm in women (P=0.001). The tumour thickness had a median of 4.4 mm and 3.8 mm in men and women, respectively (P=0.015). The 180 ciliary body tumours occurred in 112 women and 68 men. In these, the prevalence of extraocular spread was higher in women (19.6 vs 8.8%; P=0.052). The 175 iris melanomas were more common in women than men (103 vs 72, respectively).

Conclusions: In men, UMs tend to be larger and more posterior than in women.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Child
  • Choroid Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Choroid Neoplasms / genetics
  • Choroid Neoplasms / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Melanoma / epidemiology
  • Melanoma / genetics
  • Melanoma / pathology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Sex Factors
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Survival Rate
  • Tumor Burden
  • United Kingdom / epidemiology
  • Uveal Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Uveal Neoplasms / genetics
  • Uveal Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Young Adult

Supplementary concepts

  • Uveal melanoma