A retrospective analysis of 99 patients treated at Radiumhemmet, Karolinska Hospital 1979-1990 with palliative radiotherapy for brain metastases from breast cancer was performed. A relief of symptoms was obtained in 45% of patients. Median time from diagnosis of breast cancer until CNS metastases was 33 months. Median survival time with CNS metastases after diagnosis was 5 months. Prognostic indicators for survival were studied. Patients operated for a singular brain metastasis and irradiated postoperatively had a mean survival of 21 months while patients with multiple brain metastases and meningeal spread displayed a short median survival. Extracranial disease status influenced prognosis significantly. Radiation dose (CRE) did not correlate with survival.