Repeated stereotactic radiosurgery for patients with progressive brain metastases

Giuseppe Minniti, Claudia Scaringi, Sergio Paolini, Enrico Clarke, Francesco Cicone, Vincenzo Esposito, Andrea Romano, Mattia Osti, Riccardo Maurizi Enrici

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In the present study we have evaluated the efficacy and toxicity of repeated stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) in patients with recurrent/progressive brain metastases. Between March 2006 and October 2014, 43 patients (21 men and 22 women) with 47 lesions received a second course of SRS given in three daily fractions of 7–8 Gy. With a follow-up study of 19 months, the 1- and 2-year survival rates from repeated SRS were 37 and 20 %, respectively, and the 1- and 2-year local control rates were 70 and 60 %, respectively. Actuarial local control was significantly better for breast and lung metastases as compared with melanoma metastases; specifically, 1-year local control rates were 38 % for melanoma, 78 % for breast carcinoma and 73 % for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) metastases (p = 0.01). The cause of death was progressive systemic disease in 25 patients and progressive brain disease in 11 patients. Stable extracranial disease (p = 0.01) and Karnofsky performance status (KPS; p = 0.03) were predictive of longer survival. Radiologic changes suggestive of brain radionecrosis were observed in 9 (19 %) out of 47 lesions, with an actuarial risk of 34 % at 12 months. Neurological deficits (RTOG Grade 2 or 3) associated with brain necrosis occurred in 14 % of patients. In conclusion, a second course of SRS given in three daily fractions is a feasible treatment for selected patients with recurrent/progressive brain metastases. Further studies are needed to explore the efficacy and safety of different dose-fractionation schedules, especially in patients with melanoma or large metastases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-97
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neuro-Oncology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2016


  • Brain metastases
  • Brain radionecrosis
  • Fractionated stereotactic radiotherapy
  • Reirradiation
  • Stereotactic radiosurgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology
  • Neurology


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