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Episcleral brachytherapy for retinoblastoma


Background/Aims To report visual outcomes, survival outcomes and complications following episcleral brachytherapy (EB) for retinoblastoma.

Methods Retrospective review of retinoblastoma cases treated with EB in a single institution. Survival outcomes were analysed using the Kaplan-Meier method.

Results Eleven tumours of 11 eyes were treated with either iodine-125 or ruthenium-106 EB with a mean apical dose of 44 Gy. The tumours were classified as group B in 5 (46%), C in 3 (27%) or D in 3 (27%) eyes, respectively. Mean follow-up time was 75.4 months. EB served as primary treatment in 3 eyes (27%) and secondary treatment in 8 eyes (73%). Final visual acuity was better than 20/200 in 70% of cases. Globe preservation was achieved in 9 (82%) eyes. Local recurrence occurred in 18% of cases at a mean onset of 17.4 months after EB. Two group D tumours that recurred after secondary EB underwent enucleation. Mean onset of radiation retinopathy was 17.4 months following EB. No metastatic or fatal events were recorded. Kaplan-Meier analysis showed recurrence-free survival and ocular survival of 80% and overall survival of 100% at 5 years after EB.

Conclusion EB is an effective primary or secondary treatment modality for selected retinoblastoma eyes (groups B and C). Advanced group D tumours may represent a risk factor for local recurrence. Visually significant complications such as radiation retinopathy should be anticipated.

  • retinoblastoma
  • episcleral brachytherapy
  • focal consolidation therapy
  • recurrence-free survival
  • ocular survival

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