Histological findings of birdshot chorioretinopathy in an eye with ciliochoroidal melanoma

Eye (Lond). 2012 Jun;26(6):862-5. doi: 10.1038/eye.2012.10. Epub 2012 Mar 9.


Purpose: To describe the histological findings of birdshot chorioretinopathy. DESIGN/PARTICIPANT: This is a case study of a single patient who has both birdshot chorioretinopathy and ciliochoroidal melanoma.

Methods: A 55-year-old woman who was HLA-A29 positive and had birdshot chorioretinopathy had a large ciliochoroidal melanoma (T4b N0 M0) and underwent enucleation.

Outcome measures: Using histopathology, we hope to further define the pathological findings in an eye with both birdshot chorioretinopathy and coexistant ciliochoroidal melanomas.

Results: The eye showed a ciliochoroidal melanoma. In addition, elsewhere, there were multiple choroidal nodules of lymphocytes that showed the presence of CD3-positive cells, which also stained for CD4 or CD8. There were only a few CD20-positive B cells and rare CD68-positive histiocytes. No granulomas were present.

Discussion: To our knowledge, there are only two previous reports describing the histological findings in birdshot chorioretinopathy: one that was HLA-A29 negative showing choroidal granulomas and another that was HLA-A29 positive exhibiting histological findings similar to our case. Incidentally, the latter case had a history of cutaneous melanoma.

Conclusion: Birdshot chorioretinopathy is a nongranulomatous nodular infiltration of the choroid.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Birdshot Chorioretinopathy
  • Chorioretinitis / complications
  • Chorioretinitis / immunology
  • Chorioretinitis / pathology*
  • Choroid Neoplasms / complications
  • Choroid Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Coloring Agents
  • Eye Enucleation
  • Female
  • Fluorescein Angiography
  • HLA-A Antigens / immunology
  • Humans
  • Indocyanine Green
  • Melanoma / complications
  • Melanoma / pathology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Visual Acuity


  • Coloring Agents
  • HLA-A Antigens
  • HLA-A29 antigen
  • Indocyanine Green

Supplementary concepts

  • Birdshot chorioretinopathy