What are survival rates for surgery for glioblastoma multiforme (GBM)?

Updated: Jul 01, 2019
  • Author: Jeffrey N Bruce, MD; Chief Editor: Herbert H Engelhard, III, MD, PhD, FACS, FAANS  more...
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The extent of surgery (biopsy vs resection) has been shown in a number of studies to affect length of survival. In a study by Ammirati and colleagues (1987), patients with high-grade gliomas who had a gross total resection had a 2-year survival rate of 19%, while those with a subtotal resection had a 2-year survival rate of 0%. [118]

In another study of 416 patients, gross total resection, defined as >98% on MRI, conferred a survival advantage over subtotal resection (13 vs 8.8 mo). [46]

In another study of 92 patients, a total tumor resection without any residual disease resulted in a median survival of 93 weeks, whereas the smallest percent of resection (< 25%) and greatest volume of residual tumor (>20 cm3) gradually shortened the survival to 31 weeks and 50 weeks, respectively. [45]

An analysis of 28 studies found a mean duration of survival advantage of total over subtotal resection for glioblastoma multiforme (14 vs 11 mo). [44, 119]

Li and colleagues compared the survival of patients having 100% removal of the contrast-enhancing tumor, with or without additional resection of the surrounding FLAIR abnormality region to that of patients undergoing 78% to < 100% extent of resection of the enhancing mass. The median survival time for patients acheiving complete resection (15.2 months) was significantly longer than that for patients undergoing less than complete resection (9.8 months; p < 0.001). The patients who underwent resection of ≥ 53.21% of the surrounding FLAIR abnormality beyond the 100% resection achieved significant prolongation of survival (median survival times 20.7). [120]

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