Prognosis After Initial Recurrence of Cutaneous Melanoma

Jay S. Markowitz, Lisa A. Cosimi, Robert W. Carey, Sewon Kang, Catherine Padyk, Arthur J. Sober, A. Benedict Cosimi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We reviewed 231 patients who developed recurrent disease 1 to 218 months after surgical therapy for clinical stage I cutaneous melanoma. Metastatic lesions amenable to surgery, including visceral recurrences, were resected. Adjuvant systemic chemotherapy/immunotherapy or regional hyperthermic perfusion was added in patients with unresected disease. Local irradiation was employed for nonresectable brain or other isolated symptomatic metastases. The overall 5-year survival rate after initial recurrence was 36%. In patients with soft tissue or nodal recurrence, the 5-year survival rates were 49% and 38%, respectively; six (11%) of 53 patients whose initial recurrence was in a visceral organ achieved prolonged remission. Primary lesion anatomic site, thickness, pathologic type, and interval from initial therapy to recurrence were unrelated to survival. Significant prognostic factors included the site of initial metastasis, stage of primary disease, and the successful complete eradication of gross disease by surgical excision or intensive chemotherapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)703-708
Number of pages6
JournalArchives of surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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