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Stages of Intraocular (Eye) Melanoma

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    Intraocular melanoma has two staging systems. The staging system used depends on where in the eye the cancer first formed:

    • Iris.
    • Ciliary body and choroid.

    The following stages are used for intraocular melanoma of the iris:

    Stage I

    In stage I, the tumor is in the iris only and is not more than one fourth the size of the iris.

    Stage II

    Stage II is divided into stages IIA and IIB.

    • In stage IIA, the tumor:
      • is in the iris only and is more than one fourth the size of the iris; or
      • is in the iris only and has caused glaucoma; or
      • has spread next to and/or into the ciliary body, choroid, or both. The tumor has caused glaucoma.
    • In stage IIB, the tumor has spread next to and/or into the ciliary body, choroid, or both, and has also spread into the sclera. The tumor has caused glaucoma.

    Stage III

    Stage III is divided into stages IIIA and IIIB.

    • In stage IIIA, the tumor has spread through the sclera to the outside of the eyeball. The part of the tumor outside the eyeball is not more than 5 millimeters thick.
    • In stage IIIB, the tumor has spread through the sclera to the outside of the eyeball. The part of the tumor outside the eyeball is more than 5 millimeters thick.

    Stage IV

    In stage IV, the tumor may be any size and has spread:

    • to nearby lymph nodes; or
    • to other parts of the body.

    The following stages are used for intraocular melanoma of the ciliary body and choroid:

    Intraocular melanoma of the ciliary body and choroid is grouped into 4 size categories. The category depends on how wide and thick the tumor is. Category 1 tumors are the smallest and category 4 tumors are the biggest.

    Category 1:

    • The tumor is not more than 12 millimeters wide and not more than 3 millimeters thick; or
    • the tumor is not more than 9 millimeters wide and 3.1 to 6 millimeters thick.

    Category 2:

    • The tumor is 12.1 to 18 millimeters wide and not more than 3 millimeters thick; or
    • the tumor is 9.1 to 15 millimeters wide and 3.1 to 6 millimeters thick; or
    • the tumor is not more than 12 millimeters wide and 6.1 to 9 millimeters thick.
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