Solitary cerebellar metastases: analysis of 11 cases

J Formos Med Assoc. 1992 Oct;91(10):1010-2.


Solitary cerebellar metastatic tumors are rarely reported in the literature. We reviewed 240 posterior fossa tumors treated in the past eight years. There were 11 cases of solitary metastases in the cerebellum. The primary tumor was lung cancer in five cases and breast carcinoma in two cases; the remaining three cases had colon cancer, nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) and Ewing's sarcoma, respectively. All patients underwent craniectomy and gross total excision of the tumor. Seven patients survived less than one year, two cases died in the second year, and one case of NPC survived for more than two years. The only survival is a case of Ewing's sarcoma who underwent surgery 14 months ago. The symptoms and signs of all patients improved satisfactorily after surgery. Four patients received postoperative irradiation to the posterior fossa and two cases of lung cancer had a thoracotomy for the primary lung lesion; however, the survival period was not prolonged. We suggest that a cancer patient or a patient in the fifth to seventh decades of life presenting headache, gait disturbance and vomiting should promptly undergo a computed tomography (CT) scan of the head. In selected cases, surgical intervention for solitary metastatic tumors in the tiny posterior fossa may be the best initial treatment. Adjuvant therapies should then be added according to the type of tumor.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cerebellar Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging
  • Cerebellar Neoplasms / secondary*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed