Prevalence and importance of pigmented ocular fundus lesions in Gardner's syndrome

N Engl J Med. 1987 Mar 12;316(11):661-7. doi: 10.1056/NEJM198703123161104.


We examined 134 members of 16 families with Gardner's syndrome for pigmented ocular fundus lesions. Of 41 patients with documented Gardner's syndrome, 37 (90.2 percent) had such lesions. The lesions were bilateral in 32 of the patients (78.1 percent) and in 2 of 42 controls (4.8 percent). Twenty (46.5 percent) of 43 first-degree relatives at 50 percent risk for Gardner's syndrome had bilateral pigmented fundus lesions, indicating that they had probably inherited the abnormal gene. The presence of bilateral lesions, multiple lesions (more than four), or both appeared to be a specific (specificity, 0.952) and sensitive (sensitivity, 0.780) clinical marker for Gardner's syndrome. The lesions are probably congenital; they were observed in a three-month-old baby at risk. The multiplicity of the pigmented fundus lesions and their association with diffuse disturbances of the retinal pigment epithelium in the same eye suggest a widespread expression of the abnormal gene in the retinal pigment epithelial cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Fundus Oculi
  • Gardner Syndrome / genetics
  • Gardner Syndrome / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Hypertrophy
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pigment Epithelium of Eye / pathology*
  • Visual Acuity