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September 1976

Perfusion Therapy for Extremity Melanoma

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (Drs Brown, Wallack, Horstmann, Hamilton and Johnson), and the Department of Surgery, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk (Dr Rosato).

Arch Surg. 1976;111(9):961-963. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1976.01360270033005

• Because of their initial appearance on extremities, malignant melanomas lend themselves to isolated chemotherapeutic perfusions. Perfusion is attractive because one can deliver effective cytotoxic drugs without systemic toxicity.

We are reviewing 20 patients treated between 1960 and 1973 with isolated perfusion. Melphalan (L-phenylalanine mustard) was the drug of choice. Eleven of the 20 patients had previous surgical treatment. Three of the 11 patients are still alive from 27 to 72 months postperfusion. Eight died after an average survival time of 33 months. Of the seven patients who underwent perfusion as primary therapy, four patients are alive from 25 to 76 months postperfusion, and three died after an average survival time of 34 months.

There is direct correlation between stages and levels of melanoma, and perfusion and prolonged survival time.

(Arch Surg 111:961-963, 1976)