Glioblastoma Multiforme is a fast-growing and aggressive brain tumor type. Glioblastoma is also known as grade IV astrocytoma or glioma. These tumors begin in the brain and grow around the cells that help to support healthy neuron functioning in the brain. Healthy neuron functioning supports your nervous system and helps to carry out signals from your brain to the rest of your body. These types of tumors are very aggressive and can quickly multiply, group together, and spread throughout the brain.
However, there is some good news—newer treatment options are leading to longer survival for Glioblastoma patients. Neurosurgeons and oncologists still have a long way to go before these tumors are a thing of the past.
Treatment Options for Primary Brain Tumors Such As Glioblastoma
A definitive cure for these tumors is still a work in progress. Yet, with each passing year, we reach new and exciting medical breakthroughs to help us get closer to treating GBM.
The available treatments and medical advances to date mostly include various forms of chemotherapy and radiation treatments. More recently, however, there have been some significant victories in the advancement of surgical procedures for the treatment of primary brain tumors.
Dr. Chris Michael from Texas Neuro-Spine Surgery was involved with one of the most important studies in the surgical treatment of these types of tumors. More specifically, he was involved in a group that studied the outcomes of these patients post-surgery.
The study included 416 Glioblastoma patients who were treated at MD Anderson Cancer Center. During this study, it was found that the amount of tumors removed during surgery is one of the most important predictors of survival. This study also found—along with many subsequent studies—that patients who don’t experience neurologic and functional problems tend to have higher survival rates post-surgery.
Surgical Treatment Options for Glioblastoma
During surgical treatment of Glioblastoma, the goal is to remove as much of the tumor as possible using a variety of methods like surgical microscopes, contrasting agents, and surgical navigational systems. In most cases, these treatments provide the greatest chance against the possibility of significant neurologic problems for the patient.
One of the most exciting new treatments is the use of Gleolan (also called 5-ALA) coupled with surgery to remove the tumor. This course of treatment has the potential to help GBM patients survive longer and with fewer neurological problems.
Using these tools and techniques, Neurosurgeons are able to remove as much of the tumor as possible while also preserving the patient’s neurologic function. Dr. Chris Michael at Texas Neuro-Spine Surgery is the only surgeon in Dallas-Fort Worth currently using this innovative method for surgical removal of brain tumors.
Whether you qualify for surgical treatment largely depends on the location of the Glioblastoma Multiforme Primary tumor. In some cases when it is not possible to remove any significant amount of tumor due to the critical location in the brain, other treatment options will be recommended.
Have a question? Please contact us or call 214-823-2052. We have two conveniently located offices in Addison and Dallas serving patients in Dallas, Addison, Plano, Frisco, Garland, and other cities in the DFW metroplex.