Combined liver and pancreas resection with biochemotherapy for metastatic ocular melanoma

J Hepatobiliary Pancreat Surg. 2002;9(4):519-21. doi: 10.1007/s005340200066.


Systemic therapy alone for metastatic melanoma is relatively ineffective, and surgical resection of metastases to a solitary site remains the best single treatment to improve survival. While cytoreductive surgery plus chemotherapy play a significant role in the management of advanced ovarian cancer, the precise role of surgery as an adjunct to systemic therapy for melanoma metastatic to multiple sites is not well defined. We report a patient with ocular melanoma metastatic to liver and pancreas treated by cytoreductive surgery consisting of mesohepatic resection, distal pancreatectomy, and portal node dissection, followed by biochemotherapy with dacarbazine and interferon alpha. The concept of cytoreductive surgery is reviewed, with particular attention to its use in the management of metastatic melanoma. The patient's postoperative course was unremarkable and she remains alive and asymptomatic with no detectable disease at 20 months' follow-up. Cytoreductive surgery as a part of an aggressive multidisciplinary approach may play a role in the treatment of cutaneous and ocular melanoma metastatic to multiple visceral sites. Data from well-designed, innovative clinical trials of cytoreductive surgery and biochemotherapy are required to determine the effectiveness of this multidisciplinary approach.

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents, Alkylating / therapeutic use
  • Dacarbazine / therapeutic use
  • Eye Enucleation
  • Female
  • Hepatectomy*
  • Humans
  • Interferon-alpha / therapeutic use
  • Liver Neoplasms / secondary*
  • Liver Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Lymph Node Excision
  • Lymphatic Metastasis
  • Melanoma / drug therapy
  • Melanoma / pathology*
  • Melanoma / surgery
  • Middle Aged
  • Pancreatectomy*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / immunology*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Uveal Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Uveal Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Uveal Neoplasms / surgery


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Alkylating
  • Interferon-alpha
  • Dacarbazine