Welcome to Medivizor!

You're browsing our sample library. Feel free to continue browsing. You can also sign up for free to receive medical information specific to your situation.

Posted by on Jan 21, 2020 in Melanoma | 0 comments

In a nutshell

This study wanted to find out what the best order is for treating melanoma with immunotherapy medications and surgery. The study found that immunotherapy before surgery resulted in better survival outcomes for these patients.

Some background

Treatments for melanoma have changed in the last few years. A newer treatment is called immune checkpoint blockade (ICB), which uses the immune system to kill the cancer cells. In many cases, the cancer is surgically removed. It is not clear if it is better to do ICB treatment before surgically removing the cancer, or after.

Methods & findings

This study included 59 patients. All the patients had stage three melanoma which had spread to the lymph nodes. Of the 59 patients, 18 had surgery, followed by ICB treatment. This method is called adjuvant therapy (AT). The remaining 41 patients had ICB treatment, followed by surgery. This method is called neoadjuvant therapy (NAT). The patients were followed for an average of 26 months.

After three years, patients in the NAT group had a slightly higher survival without signs of cancer (62%) compared to the AT group (31%). This difference was not statistically significant. However, patients who had NAT had a longer survival rate without the cancer coming back in areas far away from the primary tumor (metastasis). Patients in the NAT group had a 62% lower risk of cancer spreading to distant areas compared to the AT group.

The bottom line

The study concluded that neoadjuvant immunotherapy for melanoma may be associated with improvements in survival.

The fine print

This was a small study based on medical records. Larger, controlled studies are necessary for stronger evidence.

Published By :

Annals of Surgical Oncology

Date :

Jan 02, 2020

Original Title :

Neoadjuvant Versus Adjuvant Immune Checkpoint Blockade in the Treatment of Clinical Stage III Melanoma.

click here to get personalized updates