PURPOSE: In choroidal melanoma the radiation threshold dose for local control remains largely unknown. The present study examined a group of patients that received a wide range of minimum tumor dose in order to investigate a dose-response relationship. A literature review is performed to compare our results with available evidence in brachytherapy and charged particle external beam radiotherapy.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A retrospective study was conducted on all choroidal melanomas treated with Strontium-90 (Sr-90) at the University Hospital of Leuven between 1983 and 2012. Local failure was defined as primary endpoint and was estimated according to the competing risk method.
RESULTS: In 135 patients, the minimum tumor dose (Dmin) ranged from 0 Gy to 287 Gy (median: 27.6 Gy). Multivariable analysis revealed Dmin ≥ 65 Gy (p = 0.04; HR = 0.09) and tumor distant from the optic disc (p < 0.001, HR = 0.09) to be independent variables favoring local control. The scleral dose, the tumor diameter and tumor height did not significantly affect local failure in multivariate analysis.
CONCLUSION: This is the first study to examine a group of patients treated with a Dmin ranging from 0 Gy to >250 Gy. Treatment with a Dmin of 65 Gy is necessary to achieve durable tumor response. The dose-response data provided by our study could be used for the design of future trials examining the ideal dose for the treatment of choroidal melanoma with brachytherapy or charged particle external beam radiotherapy.