Actas Dermo-Sifiliográficas Actas Dermo-Sifiliográficas
Actas Dermosifiliogr. 2009;100:571-85. - Vol. 100 Num.07 DOI: 10.1016/S1578-2190(09)70125-8

Experience in the Treatment of Cutaneous In-Transit Melanoma Metastases and Satellitosis With Intralesional Interleukin-2

L.A. Dehesaa, J. Vilar-Alejoa, P. Valerón-Almazána, G. Carreteroa,

a Servicio de Dermatología, Hospital Universitario de Gran Canaria Dr. Negrín, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain


interleukin 2. malignant melanoma. cutaneous metastasis. intralesional therapy.



Although metastatic melanoma has a poor prognosis, cutaneous metastases represent a special case given their ready accessibility, making it possible for dermatologists to apply local treatment. We report our experience with intralesional treatment with interleukin (IL) 2 in 7 patients with cutaneous metastases from malignant melanoma.

Material and methods

A total of 244 lesions in 7 patients with satellitosis and/or cutaneous metastases from malignant melanoma were treated with intralesional IL-2 twice a week. The maximum dose in each patient ranged from 3 to 18 million units per session, according to the number and size of lesions.


Complete or partial remission was achieved in almost all lesions (95.9% and 3.7%, respectively). Only 1 lesion (0.4%)—the largest and located subcutaneously—did not respond to intralesional treatment and required alcoholization and subsequent surgical removal to achieve cure. All partial responses occurred in subcutaneous lesions larger than 2 cm. Treatment was well tolerated with only a few mild side effects (grade 1-2).


IL-2 may be an effective and well-tolerated treatment option in patients with satellitosis and cutaneous metastases from melanoma. Lesions smaller than 2 cm and located in the epidermis or superficial dermis respond better than those larger than 2 cm or located in the subcutaneous cellular tissue. More studies are necessary to establish appropriate doses and regimens.