Clinical and pathologic features of primary orbital meningiomas in the dog were reviewed. Twenty-two meningiomas, confined to the orbit, were identified from the Comparative Ophthalmic Pathology Laboratory of Wisconsin from 1981 to 1997. The dogs ranged in age from 3 to 17 years (mean = 9.2 years). The clinical presentation, reported in 20 cases, was indicative of a retrobulbar mass and included exophthalmos and orbital swelling (18/20), and papilledema or abnormalities of the posterior segment (7/20). Visual acuity was reported in 15 cases; of those, 12 dogs were blind in the affected eye. Follow-up information was obtained on 17 cases; six dogs developed local recurrence of the neoplasm. Two dogs with recurrent neoplasms simultaneously developed blindness in the opposite eye. Extension along the optic nerve to the optic chiasm was suspected. No metastasis was found at the time of the study. Enucleation with excisional biopsy was effective therapy to date in 11 cases (0.2-4.5 years follow-up time). All neoplasms were located within the vicinity of the optic nerve and, when sectioned through the optic nerve head, appeared to completely envelope the nerve. The neoplastic cells were arranged in tight whorls and bundles characteristic of meningiomas. Most tumors had islands of chondroid and osseous metaplasia (17/22). Ocular invasion was limited to small foci in the posterior choroid or optic nerve head of six dogs. Immunoperoxidase stains on 10 cases were positive for vimentin and S-100, but negative for cytokeratin. Electron microscopy revealed complex interdigitations between cell membranes and few desmosomal intercellular attachments. Primary orbital meningiomas have a characteristic histologic appearance and may recur locally after surgical excision.
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