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Background: We report a case of a patient with iris metastasis as the initial manifestation of a systemic cancer: upper gastrointestinal tract carcinoma.
Case presentation: A 24-year-old Asian man presented to our hospital with complaints of red left eye, decreased visual acuity, pain, and photophobia for about 3 weeks with no prior history of cancer or any other medical abnormality. Ocular examination showed a pinkish white lesion on the superonasal part of the iris. The patient's intraocular pressure was progressively increasing despite medications, followed by lymphadenopathy 4 weeks later. Comprehensive examination was performed along with a complete systemic workup, which detected systemic malignancy. Histopathology and immunohistochemistry revealed signet ring cells, which indicated an upper gastrointestinal tract tumor as a primary source of iris metastasis. The systemic condition of the patient deteriorated rapidly thereafter and led to his death in the 12th week of the disease.
Conclusion: A red eye with iris lesions in otherwise healthy individuals should be considered as a possible initial manifestation of underlying systemic malignancy. Prompt referral of such patients to an oncologist is warranted.


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Journal of Medical Case Reports

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.