J. Clin. Oncol. 2019 Sep 25
Adjuvant Whole-Brain Radiation Therapy Compared With Observation After Local Treatment of Melanoma Brain Metastases: A Multicenter, Randomized Phase III Trial.   
The brain is a common site of metastasis for patients with high-risk melanoma. Although surgery or stereotactic radiosurgery are highly effective local treatments for a small number of metastases, there is a high risk of developing additional brain metastases. The role of adjuvant whole-brain radiotherapy (WBRT) in reducing new metastases is controversial, with a lack of high-level evidence specifically for melanoma.
In this randomized phase III trial, patients who had local treatment of one to three melanoma brain metastases were randomly assigned to WBRT or observation. The primary end point was distant intracranial failure within 12 months, and secondary end points included time to intracranial failure, survival, and time to deterioration in performance status.
Between April 2009 and September 2017, 215 patients were randomly assigned from 24 centers. Median follow-up was 48.1 months (range, 39.6 to 68 months). Forty-two percent of patients in the WBRT group and 50.5% of those in the observation developed distant intracranial failure within 12 months (odds ratio, 0.71; 95% CI, 0.41 to 1.23; = .22) and the rates over the entire follow-up period were 52.0% and 57.9%, respectively (odds ratio, 0.79; 95% CI, 0.45 to 1.36; = .39). Local failure rate was lower after WBRT (20.0% 33.6%; = .03). At 12 months, 41.5% of patients in the WBRT group and 51.4% of patients in the observation group had died ( = .28), with no difference in the rate of neurologic death. Median time to deterioration in performance status was 3.8 months after WBRT and 4.4 months with observation ( = .32). WBRT was associated with more grade 1 to 2 acute toxicity.
After local treatment of one to three melanoma brain metastases, adjuvant WBRT does not provide clinical benefit in terms of distant intracranial control, survival, or preservation of performance status.

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