Background: The clinical course of uveal melanoma differs greatly from that of cutaneous melanoma.
Methods: Twenty-four patients with metastatic uveal melanoma (13 men and 11 women; median age at diagnosis, 56 years [range, 17-67 years]) were evaluated retrospectively.
Results: Main sites of metastases were liver (87%), lung (46%), bone (29%), and skin (17%). Median relapse-free survival time was 36 months (range, 5-240 months). Median survival time after clinical detection of metastases was 9 months (range, 1-54 months). Relapse-free survival time was significantly greater in patients 50 years of age or younger. After manifestation of metastases, the clinical course was more favorable in patients in whom the liver was either not involved at all or not among the first sites of dissemination. These patients had a median survival time of 19 months, compared with 7 months for patients in whom the liver was involved initially. First-line systemic treatment of metastatic disease yielded three cases of stable disease lasting 6-14 months, but no complete or partial response. Three patients received intraarterial liver perfusion as first- or second-line treatment, resulting in one partial response, which lasted 6 months.
Conclusion: Treatment and prognosis results of patients with metastatic uveal melanoma were poor, especially when the disseminated to the liver; survival time of approximately 9 months can be expected.