(125)I episcleral plaque brachytherapy in the treatment of choroidal melanoma: a single-institution experience in Spain

Brachytherapy. Jul-Sep 2009;8(3):290-6. doi: 10.1016/j.brachy.2009.03.189. Epub 2009 May 9.


Purpose: To analyze the results of episcleral plaque brachytherapy from the Catalan Institute of Oncology in Spain.

Materials and methods: From September 1996 through December 2004, 120 patients with choroidal melanoma (median age, 59 years) were treated with iodine-125 seeds at our institution. Patients were classified according to the criteria developed by the Collaborative Ocular Melanoma Study (COMS) group, as follows-COMS-I: 3 patients; COMS-II: 87 patients; COMS-III: 24 patients; and indeterminate COMS: 9 patients. Followup ranged from 1 year to 8.4 years.

Results: Overall survival at 5 and 8 years was 83.9% and 73.3%, respectively. The 5- and 8-year specific survival rate was 85.7%. Local control was 88.2% and 72.7% at 5 and 8 years, respectively. The most common treatment-related toxicity was cataract formation (31.6% of cases), followed by radiation retinopathy (7.5%) and retinal detachment (4.1%).

Conclusion: The results of this institutional retrospective study confirm that the use of iodine-125 episcleral plaques to treat choroidal melanoma offers the potential for conserving a functioning eyeball. The toxicity profile is favorable and disease control is similar to other techniques.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Brachytherapy / adverse effects
  • Brachytherapy / methods*
  • Choroid Neoplasms / mortality
  • Choroid Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Iodine Radioisotopes
  • Male
  • Melanoma / mortality
  • Melanoma / radiotherapy*
  • Middle Aged
  • Radiotherapy Dosage
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Spain


  • Iodine Radioisotopes