Skeletal metastases of melanoma.
Sixteen hundred and seventy-seven melanoma patients were treated at Duke University Medical Center from 1956 to 1976. Osseous metastases were more common than previously reported and occurred in 116 patients (6.9 per cent), most often in the axial skeleton. Diagnosis was made by roentgenogram, bone scan, or both in the symptomatic patient. Seventy-five patients sustained pathological fractures, most of which were successfully treated conservatively. Nine of the ten patients with neurological symptoms were improved by laminectomy. The grave prognosis for melanoma patients with osseous metastases (mean survival, 3.6 months) led to conservatism even for an impending pathological fracture. Unstable pathological fractures of long bones were treated by internal fixation and irradiation.
Stewart, WR; Gelberman, RH; Harrelson, JM; Seigler, HF
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