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Episcleral brachytherapy of uveal melanoma: role of intraoperative echographic confirmation
  1. Hassan A Aziz1,
  2. Yahya A Al Zahrani1,
  3. James Bena2,
  4. Brandy Lorek1,
  5. Allan Wilkinson3,
  6. John Suh3,
  7. Arun D Singh1
  1. 1Department of Ophthalmic Oncology, Cole Eye Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio, USA
  2. 2Department of Quantitative Health Sciences, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio, USA
  3. 3Department of Radiation Oncology, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Arun D Singh, Director, Department of Ophthalmic Oncology, Cole Eye Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland OH 44106, USA; singha{at}


Purpose To compare the rates of tumour recurrence following episcleral brachytherapy for uveal melanoma before and after implementation of intraoperative echographic confirmation of plaque placement.

Materials and methods All patients with primary single ciliary body or choroidal melanoma treated with iodine-125 or ruthenium-106 plaque brachytherapy between 1 January 2004 and 30 December 2013 were included. Exclusion criteria were patients with previous radiation treatment and patients who received adjuvant transpupillary thermotherapy. Since February 2007, intraoperative echographic confirmation was initiated to ensure that the plaque was centred on the tumour base and/or all tumour margins were covered by the plaque.

Results 252 patients were included in the study. Local tumour control after primary brachytherapy was achieved in 242/252 (96.0%). Of the 10 patients with treatment failure, 8 patients had local recurrence and 2 patients had failure to response. With the incorporation of the intraoperative echographic confirmation for plaque positioning the treatment failure rate decreased from 9.3% (5/54 patients) to 1.5% (3/198 patients). Continuous and categorical univariable predictors of recurrence were analysed for statistical significance. The only statistically significant variable was the intraoperative echographic confirmation (HR: 0.16; p=0.032) for recurrence within the first 24 months.

Conclusions Intraoperative echographic confirmation of plaque placement during episcleral brachytherapy for choroidal melanoma reduces the risk of early local recurrence.

  • Choroid
  • Diagnostic tests/Investigation
  • Retina

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