Recurrent Glioblastoma

Recurrent Glioblastoma

Glioblastoma is the most common and most aggressive malignant brain cancer in adults. It is often referred to as glioblastoma multiforme or GBM

Normally, glioblastoma is treated with a combination of neurosurgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. Despite this intensive treatment, recurrence is common with a median time of recurrence from 12 to 16 months.

Causes and Risk Factors of Recurrent Glioblastoma

The causes of recurrent glioblastoma are not completely understood, but it is believed to be caused by the rapid growth rate of the cancer and the ability of the cells to resist treatment.

Common risk factors for recurrent glioblastoma include:

  • Age – It is more common in older people.
  • Gender – It is more common in men.
  • History of cancer – People who have had previous cancers are more likely to develop glioblastoma.
  • Smoking – People who smoke are more likely to develop glioblastoma than people who do not smoke.
  • Exposure to certain cancer-causing agents such as radiation, chemicals, and certain viruses.

Diagnosing Recurrent Glioblastoma

Recurrent glioblastoma can be difficult to diagnose. Symptoms of recurrent glioblastoma can be similar to those of other conditions, such as stroke, infections, or other brain diseases. A diagnosis is usually made with imaging studies, such as MRI or CT scan.

The radiologist looks for new or changes in the existing tumours. If the imaging studies show the presence of a recurrent tumour, a biopsy may be taken for further testing.

Treatment of Recurrent Glioblastoma

Treatment of recurrent glioblastoma is aimed at controlling the tumour and prolonging life. Treatment options may include:

  • Surgery – Surgery may be used to remove as much of the tumour as possible.
  • Radiation therapy – High-dose radiation therapy may be used to target the tumour.
  • Chemotherapy – Chemotherapy is used to kill or damage cancer cells.
  • Targeted therapy – Targeted therapy, such as bevacizumab, may be used to block the growth of the tumour.

Treatment for recurrent glioblastoma is highly individualized and the decision to proceed with treatment is based on a variety of factors, including the size and location of the tumour, the patient’s overall health, and the patient’s preferences.