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J Neurooncol. 2008 Jan;86(2):231-8. Epub 2007 Sep 12.

Treatment and prognosis of brain metastases from breast cancer.

Author information

1
Department of Radiology, University of the Ryukyus School of Medicine, 207 Uehara, Nishihara-cho, Okinawa, Japan. kogawa@med.u-ryukyu.ac.jp

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

To analyze retrospectively the results of treatments for patients with brain metastases from breast cancer.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

The records of 65 breast cancer patients with brain metastases who were treated between 1985 and 2005 were reviewed. For brain metastases, 11 patients (17%) were treated with surgical resection followed by radiotherapy, and the remaining 54 patients were treated with radiotherapy alone. Systemic chemotherapy was also administered to 11 patients after brain radiotherapy.

RESULTS:

The overall median survival for all patients was 6.1 months (range, 0.4-82.2 months). In univariate analysis, treatment modality, Karnofsky performance status (KPS), administration of systemic chemotherapy, extracranial disease status and total radiation dose each had significant impact on overall survival, and in multivariate analysis, treatment modality, KPS and administration of systemic chemotherapy were significant prognostic factors. Eight patients survived for more than 2 years after the diagnosis of brain metastases, and all these patients were treated with surgical resection and/or systemic chemotherapy in addition to radiotherapy. For the 45 patients treated with palliative radiotherapy (without systemic chemotherapy), the improvements in neurological symptoms were observed in 35 patients (78%), with the median duration of improvement of 3.1 months (range, 1.5-4.4 months).

CONCLUSIONS:

The prognoses for patients with brain metastases from breast cancer were generally poor, although selected patients may survive longer with intensive brain tumor treatment, such as surgical resection and/or systemic chemotherapy in addition to brain radiotherapy. For patients with unfavorable prognoses, palliative radiotherapy was effective in improving the quality of the remaining lifetime.

PMID:
17849084
DOI:
10.1007/s11060-007-9469-1
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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