Combination Hyperthermia and Radiation Therapy for Malignant Melanoma

Tumor volume

Tumor Volume



The study aims to evaluate the efficacy of treatment of hyperthermia in combination with radiation for patients with malignant melanoma. The data obtained from the study indicated that the sequence of combination therapy may be an important parameter for obtaining optimum therapeutic gain.

Patients characteristics

38 patients with multiple recurrent malignant melanoma treated with radiation alone and hyperthermia in combination with radiation.


Radiation therapy
The time interval between the hyperthermia and the radiation therapy ranged from three to six minutes. Various radiation time dose fractionation schedules were used, but the majority of the lesions were treated with either twice per week or once per week regimen.
Heating methods
Two modes of radiofrequency heating (RF) were used throughout the clinical trial. The most used mode was an inductive method of RF heating at 27.12 MHz. Occasionally, the bulky lesions, e.g.,more than 5.0 cm in depth, was heated with RF capacitive heating at 13.56 MHz. Different size applicators were used depending on the location and size of the lesions.


Tumor response
The overall complete tumor response rate following the combination hyperthermia and radiation therapy is superior to that achieved with radiation therapy alone (70% versus 46%).
Normal tissue response
No disproportionately enhanced skin and subcutaneous reactions developed after the combined treatment relative to those obtained with radiation alone. Occasionally the surface lesions developed superficial burns or blister formation (less than 10%of patients treated), which usually healed promptly following the completion of the therapy.


This data tend to indicate that the sequence of combination therapy may be important parameter for obtaining optimum therapeutic gain. So long as there exists differential temperatures between the tumor and the normal tissues, the sequence of hyperthermia and radiation therapy should be such that maximal sensitization is obtained. This can be accomplished by either immediately pre or post heating with respect to radiation therapy.

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Scientific article publishing date 28/5/1981

Immucura identifier BSC21_034EN