The spontaneous prognostic factors and optimal therapeutic strategy for WHO Grade II gliomas (GIIGs) have yet to be unanimously defined. Specifically, the role of resection is still debated, most notably because the actual amount of resection has seldom been assessed.
Cases of GIIGs treated before December 2007 were extracted from a multicenter database retrospectively collected since January 1985 and prospectively collected since 1996. Inclusion criteria were a patient age ≥ 18 years at diagnosis, histological diagnosis of WHO GIIG, and MRI evaluation of tumor volume at diagnosis and after initial surgery. One thousand ninety-seven lesions were included in the analysis. The mean follow-up was 7.4 years since radiological diagnosis. Factors significant in a univariate analysis (with a p value ≤ 0.1) were included in the multivariate Cox proportional hazard regression model analysis.
At the time of radiological diagnosis, independent spontaneous factors of a poor prognosis were an age ≥ 55 years, an impaired functional status, a tumor location in a nonfrontal area, and, most of all, a larger tumor size. When the study starting point was set at the time of first treatment, independent favorable prognostic factors were limited to a smaller tumor size, an epileptic symptomatology, and a greater extent of resection.
This large series with its volumetric assessment refines the prognostic value of previously stressed clinical and radiological parameters and highlights the importance of tumor size and location. The results support additional arguments in favor of the predominant role of resection, in accordance with recently reported experiences.