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Radiat Med. 2003 Jul-Aug;21(4):155-60.

Efficacy of whole brain radiotherapy combined with fractionated stereotactic radiotherapy in metastatic brain tumors, and prognostic factors.

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Department of Therapeutic Radiology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Korea.



We attempted to analyze the effectiveness of whole brain radiotherapy (WBRT) combined with fractionated stereotactic radiotherapy (FSRT) in brain metastases.


Thirty-seven metastatic brain tumors in 29 patients without previous treatment were treated with WBRT plus FSRT, from October 1996 to February 2002. Four of the patients received stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) prior to WBRT. Non-small cell lung cancer was the most common type of primary tumor (20/29). The total dose to the whole brain ranged from 30 Gy to 40 Gy, and the boost dose from FSRT ranged from 12 Gy to 40 Gy. End points were survival rate and local control rates. Factors influencing survival were evaluated.


Median survival was 13 months, and actuarial survival rates at one and two years were 81% and 39%, respectively. Actuarial one and two year local control rates for all lesions were 78% and 71%, respectively. Survival was significantly associated with age, tumor size, presence of active extracranial tumors, and performance status. No acute or delayed complications were observed.


We believe that WBRT plus FSRT should be included in the treatment options for metastatic brain tumors, and we consider the effect of this non-invasive method to be quite good in patients with good prognostic factors, although other invasive modalities could also be effective in them.

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