Outcomes and prognosis of patients with brain metastases from advanced renal cell carcinoma are not well characterized in the targeted-therapy era. This retrospective series of 106 patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma and brain metastases revealed that the Karnofsky performance status at the start of therapy, diagnosis to treatment time, and number of brain metastases are prognostic factors for overall survival in this patient population.Background:
The outcomes and prognosis of patients with brain metastases from advanced renal cell carcinoma (RCC) are not well characterized in the targeted-therapy era.Methods:
Data from patients with metastatic RCC (mRCC) and brain metastases treated with targeted therapy were collected through the International Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma Database Consortium from 7 cancer centers.Results:
Overall, 106 (15%) of 705 patients with mRCC had brain metastases. Forty-seven patients had brain metastases at the start of first-line anti–vascular endothelial growth factor therapy, and the rest developed metastases during follow-up. Of the patients with brain metastases, 12%, 42% and 29% were in the favorable, intermediate, and poor prognosis groups, respectively, per the Heng criteria. Ninety percent had cerebral metastases, 17% had cerebellar metastases, 37% had a Karnofsky performance status (KPS) <80%, and 80% had neurologic symptoms at presentation. The median largest size and number of brain metastases was 1.8 cm (range, 0.2–6.6 cm) and one (range, 1 to innumerable), respectively. The patients were treated with sunitinib (n = 77), sorafenib (n = 23), bevacizumab (n = 5), and temsirolimus (n = 1). Local disease treatment included whole brain radiotherapy (81%), stereotactic radiosurgery (25%), and neurosurgery (25%). On multivariable analysis, KPS < 80%, diagnosis to treatment with targeted therapy <1 year, and a higher number of brain metastases (>4) was associated with worse survival from the time of diagnosis with brain metastases.Conclusions:
Patients with brain metastases from RCC are unlikely to be in the favorable risk group. KPS at the start of therapy, diagnosis to treatment time, and the number of brain metastases are prognostic factors for overall survival.