Hemorrhage of liver and bone metastases as a result of rapid response to dual BRAF/MEK inhibition in metastatic melanoma: a case report

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Combination therapy using a BRAF and MEK inhibitor significantly improves both progression-free and overall survival in patients with BRAF V600-mutated stage IV melanoma. Dual MAPK inhibition achieves an objective response in the majority of patients. We present a case of a woman with BRAF V600E-mutated malignant melanoma and rapidly progressing liver, bone, and lymph node metastases. The patient commenced dabrafenib and trametinib with clinical and biochemical signs of response after 2 days. On day 3 she developed grade 3 liver hemorrhage, which was successfully embolized. Her anemia responded appropriately to transfusions and stabilized after interventional resolution of the hemorrhagic event. Subsequently she developed a pathological fracture of the right proximal humerus. MRI showed cystic bone metastases with stigmata of bleeding. To our knowledge, this is the first case report of a patient with hemorrhage of both liver and bone metastases of a melanoma. As the patient responded rapidly to dabrafenib and trametinib we hypothesize that the hemorrhage may be due to rapid tumor necrosis and bleeding of affected tumor supplying blood vessels. Our case demonstrates the importance of considering tumoral bleeding as a side effect of BRAF and MEK inhibition in responding melanoma patients. Mechanical intervention can be effective in resolving this treatment-related adverse event.

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