Impact of brain metastasis velocity on neurologic death for brain metastasis patients experiencing distant brain failure after initial stereotactic radiosurgery

Academic Article


  • Purpose: Patients with high rates of developing new brain metastases have an increased likelihood of dying of neurologic death. It is unclear, however, whether this risk is affected by treatment choice following failure of primary stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS). Methods: From July 2000 to March 2017, 440 patients with brain metastasis were treated with SRS and progressed to have a distant brain failure (DBF). Eighty-seven patients were treated within the immunotherapy era. Brain metastasis velocity (BMV) was calculated for each patient. In general, the institutional philosophy for use of salvage SRS vs whole brain radiotherapy (WBRT) was to postpone the use of WBRT for as long as possible and to treat with salvage SRS when feasible. No further treatment was reserved for patients with poor life expectancy and who were not expected to benefit from salvage treatment. Results: Two hundred and eighty-five patients were treated with repeat SRS, 91 patients were treated with salvage WBRT, and 64 patients received no salvage radiation therapy. One-year cumulative incidence of neurologic death after salvage SRS vs WBRT was 15% vs 23% for the low- (p = 0.06), 30% vs 37% for the intermediate- (p < 0.01), and 31% vs 48% (p < 0.01) for the high-BMV group. Salvage WBRT was associated with increased incidence of neurologic death on multivariate analysis (HR 1.64, 95% CI 1.13–2.39, p = 0.01) when compared to repeat SRS. One-year cumulative incidence of neurologic death for patients treated within the immunotherapy era was 9%, 38%, and 38% for low-, intermediate-, and high-BMV groups, respectively (p = 0.01). Conclusion: Intermediate and high risk BMV groups are predictive of neurologic death. The association between BMV and neurologic death remains strong for patients treated within the immunotherapy era.
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    Author List

  • LeCompte MC; Hughes RT; Farris M; Masters A; Soike MH; Lanier C; Glenn C; Cramer CK; Watabe K; Su J
  • Start Page

  • 285
  • End Page

  • 292
  • Volume

  • 146
  • Issue

  • 2