Melanocytoma of the iris with rapidly developing secondary glaucoma

Surv Ophthalmol. Sep-Oct 1995;40(2):136-44. doi: 10.1016/s0039-6257(95)80003-4.


A 28-year-old woman with an upper nasal iris mass developed secondary glaucoma within a few months of presentation. Although the elevated pressure responded to medical therapy, in the interests of a definitive diagnosis as well as prevention of damage to the trabecular meshwork, surgical management was decided upon. Tumor excision was performed through a double-layered sclerolimbal flap. Light and electron microscopic examinations of the tissue revealed a partially necrotic iris melanocytoma. Six months after surgery, the patient's best corrected visual acuity was 20/30 in the affected eye, and the intraocular pressure was 21 mmHg without therapy. The lens remained clear. The differential diagnosis and management of melanocytomas, particularly the role of biopsy, are discussed.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Glaucoma / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Iris Neoplasms / complications*
  • Iris Neoplasms / pathology
  • Iris Neoplasms / surgery
  • Nevus / complications*
  • Nevus / pathology
  • Nevus / surgery