[The treatment of brain metastases]
SourceNederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde, 146, 37, (2002), pp. 1724-1729
Article / Letter to editor
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Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde
SubjectExperimental diagnostics and therapy of malignancies; Experimental radiotherapy and neuro-oncology.; Pathophysiology of Brain and Behaviour; Experimentele radiotherapie en neuro-oncologie.; Onderzoek Neurochirurgie; Pathofysiologie van Hersenen en Gedrag
Patients with cancer have a 15 to 30% risk of developing symptomatic brain metastases. The prognosis is extremely poor then: the median survival period is less than one year. Treatment strategies aim to guarantee an optimal quality of life. Curative treatment can only be given in just a few unique cases. Besides the previous standard treatment of whole-brain radiotherapy, the efficacy of other treatment modalities as surgery, radiosurgery, and systemic chemotherapy has been demonstrated to have additional value for certain indications. Important factors that play a role in the decision to give a specific treatment are the age and performance status of the patient, the number of brain metastases and their location, the systemic tumour activity, and the radiosensitivity and chemosensitivity of the primary tumour. A multidisciplinary approach is necessary to guarantee an optimal treatment plan.
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