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Uveal Melanoma Identified as Ocular Mass on Point-of-care Ultrasound


Case Presentation: A 41-year-old man presented to the emergency department with five months of progressive monocular vision loss in his right eye, which he described as a gradually descending and enlarging black spot. He had no light perception in his right eye with elevated intraocular pressure and an afferent pupillary defect, while his left eye visual acuity and pupillary exam was normal. Point-of-care ultrasound demonstrated a hyperechoic, pedunculated mass in the posterior chamber of his right eye, consistent with a diagnosis of ocular melanoma. Ophthalmology scheduled the patient for an elective, right eye enucleation the following week, after which a diagnosis of uveal melanoma (UM) was confirmed on histopathology.

Discussion: Uveal melanoma is an uncommon diagnosis that requires prompt intervention and surveillance due to the possibility of distant metastases arising in up to 50% of patients. Emergency department diagnosis of UM may be confounded by features of other intraocular pathology, such as increased ocular pressure or the finding of retinal detachment on fundoscopy. When emergency providers encounter glaucoma or retinal detachment on physical exam, point-of-care ultrasonography represents a key adjunct in the timely diagnosis and referral of this potentially vision- and life-threatening malignancy.

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