Hydroxyapatite versus polyethylene orbital implants for patients undergoing enucleation for uveal melanoma

Can J Ophthalmol. 2015 Apr;50(2):151-4. doi: 10.1016/j.jcjo.2014.11.007.


Objective: Clinical outcomes for enucleation vary widely, depending on surgical technique, implant choice, and indications for enucleation. The goal of this study was to compare complications of enucleation using hydroxyapatite versus polyethylene orbital implants for 1 indication: uveal melanoma in adults.

Design: Retrospective chart review

Participants: Consecutive case series of patients who were enucleated for uveal melanoma by a single surgeon (J.W.H.) from 1999-2009.

Methods: A retrospective chart review was performed to record clinical and histopathologic features, surgical technique, orbital implant characteristics, and outcomes in a consecutive series of patients with uveal melanoma who were treated by enucleation by a single surgeon (J.W.H.) between 1999 and 2009.

Results: This study included 139 patients; 64 received hydroxyapatite implants, and 75 received polyethylene implants wrapped in donor sclera. Complications included blepharoptosis in 4 (2.9%), conjunctival cyst in 2 (1.4%), volume deficit in 2 (1.4%), implant exposure in 1 (0.7%), and conjunctival erosion in 1 (0.7%) patient. There were no significant differences in the clinicopathologic features or complications between the 2 groups.

Conclusions: Few complications were encountered using this enucleation technique, and there was no difference in complication rates between patients receiving hydroxyapatite and polyethylene implants.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Durapatite / chemistry*
  • Eye Enucleation*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Melanoma / pathology
  • Melanoma / surgery*
  • Middle Aged
  • Orbit / surgery
  • Orbital Implants*
  • Polyethylene / chemistry*
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Prosthesis Implantation
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Uveal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Uveal Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Young Adult


  • Polyethylene
  • Durapatite

Supplementary concepts

  • Uveal melanoma