Treatment of melanoma metastases in the brain

Matthew G. Ewend, Lisa A. Carey, Henry Brem

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Melanoma is prone to spread to the brain and is the third most common source of intracranial metastasis. Patients usually present with signs and symptoms of increased intracranial pressure, a new focal neurologic deficit, or seizures. Contrasted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is the single most valuable imaging modality. Surgical therapy is the appropriate choice for single lesions that are accessible, especially if they are causing significant mass effect or are located in the posterior fossa. Patients with several intracranial metastases who undergo resection of all lesions may have a similar prognosis to those with a single resected lesion. Stereotactic radiosurgery appears to provide good local control of small lesions. External beam radiotherapy may provide some benefit to patients, and is often used in conjunction with surgery or stereotactic radiosurgery. To date, chemotherapy has been limited because of chemo-resistance and drug delivery issues. Future directions for treatment may include local sustained delivery of either chemotherapy or immunoregulatory molecules.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)429-435
Number of pages7
JournalSeminars in surgical oncology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1996


  • brain
  • chemotherapy
  • melanoma
  • neoplasm metastasis
  • radiation therapy
  • radiosurgery
  • stereotaxic techniques
  • surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oncology


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