Intraocular melanocytic tumors develop from uveal melanocytes in the iris, ciliary body, and choroid. The 2 main groups of melanocytic tumors of the uveal tract (uvea) are benign nevi and melanomas. In contrast to melanocytic cancers of the skin and mucosal membranes, which usually initially spread through the lymphatics, melanocytic malignancies of the uvea that metastasize typically do so hematogenously. Pigmented intraocular tumors that originate from the pigmented epithelium of the iris, ciliary body, and retina constitute another group of melanin-containing tumors of neuroepithelial origin. These rare tumors are discussed separately at the end of this chapter. See also Chapter 12.
Excerpted from BCSC 2020-2021 series: Section 4 - Ophthalmic Pathology and Intraocular Tumors. For more information and to purchase the entire series, please visit https://www.aao.org/bcsc.