Autofluorescence characteristics of suspicious choroidal nevi

The New York Eye Cancer Center, 115 East 61st Street, New York, NY 10065, USA.
Optometry (St. Louis, Mo.) (Impact Factor: 7.5). 04/2009; 80(3):126-30. DOI: 10.1016/j.optm.2008.07.018
Source: PubMed


The aim of this study was to describe autofluorescence characteristics of 30 suspicious choroidal nevi.
Fundus autofluorescence (FAF) images were reviewed retrospectively on 30 consecutive cases of suspicious choroidal nevi. Autofluorescence imaging was achieved using a fundus camera-based system with a barrier filter of 695 nm and excitation of 580 nm. All nevi exhibited one or more of the following characteristics: tumor thickness, basal dimension greater than 5 mm, subretinal fluid, posterior location, ophthalmic symptoms, or lipofuscin (orange pigment).
Suspicious choroidal nevi were found to have specific FAF features. Orange pigment was noted in 67% of the nevi and appeared as very bright hyperfluorescent areas. Overlying retinal pigment epithelium hypertrophy and atrophy were noted in 50% and appeared darkly hypofluorescent. Subretinal fluid (17%) and drusen (17%) both appeared mildly hyperfluorescent.
Orange pigment was the most hyperfluorescent FAF finding. Because the presence of orange pigment is a known risk factor for malignant transformation, the use of camera-based FAF imaging may improve our ability to identify those choroidal nevi that will transform into malignant melanoma. More long-term follow-up studies will be required to determine the exact prognostic value of our findings.

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