Twenty patients (M 11, F 9; ranging from 1-77 years old) with histologically proven glial tumours in the thalamic region, treated from 1979 until 1994 at Kyushu University Hospital were retrospectively reviewed and analysed in order to elucidate their clinical and neuropathological characteristics. The initial common clinical manifestations were those of increased intracranial pressure or motor weakness. The histological diagnosis of the tumour was pilocytic astrocytoma in 2 patients, fibrillary astrocytoma in 7, anaplastic astrocytoma in 7, and glioblastoma multiforme in 4. The initial treatment was surgery alone in 4 patients, surgery followed by radiation therapy in 5, surgery followed by radiation therapy and chemotherapy in 9, and conventional radiation therapy alone in 2 patients. The 3-year overall actuarial survival rate for all patients was 20% but was related to both the histological type and the age of the patients: As a result, the rate was 44% for patients with low-grade astrocytoma compared to 0% for those with high-grade astrocytoma. While 5 out of 11 patients under the age of 25 years at their initial presentation have survived for from 2-16 years after the diagnosis, all patients presenting after the age of 25 years died within 3 years after treatment. Thalamic glial tumours are not a homogeneous group of tumours in terms of clinical behaviour and histopathological features, and the poor overall results, especially in adult tumours, thus emphasise the need for continued research in the treatment of these tumours.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Neurology