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Long-term health-related quality of life and neurocognitive functioning after treatment in skull base meningioma patients

Fleur L. Fisher, Amir H. Zamanipoor Najafabadi, Pim B. van der Meer, Florien W. Boele, Saskia M. Peerdeman, Wilco C. Peul, Martin J. B. Taphoorn, Linda Dirven, and Wouter R. van Furth


Patients with skull base meningioma (SBM) often require complex surgery around critical neurovascular structures, placing them at high risk of poor health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and possibly neurocognitive dysfunction. As the survival of meningioma patients is near normal, long-term neurocognitive and HRQOL outcomes are important to evaluate, including evaluation of the impact of specific tumor location and treatment modalities on these outcomes.


In this multicenter cross-sectional study including patients 5 years or more after their last tumor intervention, Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36) and European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) QLQ-BN20 questionnaires were used to assess generic and disease-specific HRQOL. Neurocognitive functioning was assessed with standardized neuropsychological assessment. SBM patient assessments were compared with those of 1) informal caregivers of SBM patients who served as controls and 2) convexity meningioma patients. In addition, the authors compared anterior/middle SBM patients with posterior SBM patients and anterior/middle and posterior SBM patients separately with controls. Multivariable and propensity score regression analyses were performed to correct for possible confounders.


Patients with SBM (n = 89) with a median follow-up of 9 years after the last intervention did not significantly differ from controls (n = 65) or convexity meningioma patients (n = 84) on generic HRQOL assessment. Statistically significantly but not clinically relevantly better disease-specific HRQOL was found for SBM patients compared with convexity meningioma patients. Anterior/middle SBM patients (n = 62) had significantly and clinically relevantly better HRQOL in SF-36 and EORTC QLQ-BN20 scores than posterior SBM patients (n = 27): physical role functioning (corrected difference 17.1, 95% CI 0.2–34.0), motor dysfunction (−10.1, 95% CI −17.5 to −2.7), communication deficit (−14.2, 95% CI −22.7 to −5.6), and weakness in both legs (−10.1, 95% CI −18.8 to −1.5). SBM patients whose primary treatment was radiotherapy had lower HRQOL scores compared with SBM patients who underwent surgery on two domains: bodily pain (−33.0, 95% CI −55.2 to −10.9) and vitality (−18.9. 95% CI −33.7 to −4.1). Tumor location and treatment modality did not result in significant differences in neurocognitive functioning, although 44% of SBM patients had deficits in at least one domain.


In the long term, SBM patients do not experience significantly more sequelae in HRQOL and neurocognitive functioning than do controls or patients with convexity meningioma. Patients with posterior SBM had poorer HRQOL than anterior/middle SBM patients, and primary treatment with radiotherapy was associated with worse HRQOL. Neurocognitive functioning was not affected by tumor location or treatment modality.

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High risk of acute deterioration in patients harboring symptomatic colloid cysts of the third ventricle

Philip C. de Witt Hamer, Marco J. T. Verstegen, Rob J. De Haan, W. Peter Vandertop, Ralph T. W. M. Thomeer, Jan J. A. Mooij, and Wouter R. van Furth

Object. Patients harboring colloid cysts of the third ventricle can present with acute neurological deterioration, or the first indication of the lesion may appear when the patient suddenly dies. The risk of such an occurrence in a patient already identified as harboring a colloid cyst is unknown. The goal of this study was to estimate the risk of acute deterioration in patients with colloid cysts.

Methods. A retrospective study was made of a cohort of patients with newly diagnosed colloid cysts who were recruited in The Netherlands between January 1, 1993, and December 31, 1997. Seventy-eight patients were identified, all of whom displayed symptoms. Twenty-five patients (32%) presented with symptoms of acute deterioration; four patients died suddenly and the cysts were discovered at autopsy. The overall mortality rate was 12%. Results of a multivariate logistic regression analysis demonstrated that no subgroup of patients presenting without acute deterioration could be identified on the basis of patient age, duration of symptoms, cyst size, or the presence of hydrocephalus. The national incidence of colloid cysts in The Netherlands is 1/106 person-years; the prevalence was estimated to be 1800 asymptomatic colloid cysts.

Conclusions. Acute deterioration was a frequent presentation among a national cohort of Dutch patients harboring symptomatic colloid cysts. The risk of acute deterioration in a symptomatic patient with a colloid cyst in The Netherlands is estimated to be 34%. The estimated risk for an asymptomatic patient with an incidental colloid cyst is significantly lower. These results strongly advocate the selection of surgical treatment for patients with symptomatic colloid cysts.

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Colloid Cysts