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Adomas Bunevicius, Vytenis Deltuva, Sarunas Tamasauskas, Arimantas Tamasauskas, Edward R. Laws Jr. and Robertas Bunevicius

Object

A low triiodothyronine (T3) state is highly prevalent and is associated with a poor prognosis in critically ill patients. The authors investigated, in patients undergoing brain tumor surgery, the direct association of a perioperative low T3 syndrome with clinical outcomes and also with symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Methods

Ninety consecutive patients (71% women, median age 55 years), on admission for brain tumor surgery, were evaluated for sociodemographic and clinical characteristics. Their thyroid function profile was assessed on the morning of brain tumor surgery and on the morning after brain tumor surgery. Patients with free T3 concentrations of 3.1 pmol/L or less were considered to have low T3 syndrome. The patients were evaluated for symptoms of depression and anxiety using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) before and after surgery and for clinical outcomes using the Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS) at discharge.

Results

After brain tumor surgery, free T3 concentrations decreased (p < 0.001) and the proportion of patients with low T3 levels increased from 38% to 54% (p = 0.02). Lower preoperative (rho = 0.30, p = 0.004) and postoperative (rho = 0.33, p = 0.002) free T3 concentrations correlated with low GOS scores at discharge. Preoperative low T3 syndrome (OR 5.49, 95% CI 1.27–23.69, p = 0.02) and postoperative low T3 syndrome (OR 8.73, 95% CI 1.49–51.21, p = 0.02) both increased risk for unfavorable clinical outcomes (GOS scores < 5) at discharge, after adjusting for age, sex, histological diagnosis of brain tumor, preoperative functional impairment, previous treatment for brain tumor, and depressive symptoms. Preoperative low T3 syndrome increased the risk for preoperative (HADS-depression subscale score ≥ 11; OR 4.12, 95% CI 1.16–14.58, p = 0.03) but not postoperative depressive symptoms independently from sociodemographic and clinical factors.

Conclusions

Low T3 syndrome is a strong independent predictor of unfavorable clinical outcomes and depressive symptoms, and its diagnosis and preoperative management should be considered in patients undergoing neurosurgery for the treatment of brain tumors.

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Adomas Bunevicius, Karen Lavezzo, Leah Shabo, Jesse McClure and Jason P. Sheehan

OBJECTIVE

Quality of life (QOL) is an important endpoint measure of cancer treatment. The authors’ goal was to evaluate QOL trajectories and prognostic value in cancer patients treated with stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) for brain metastases.

METHODS

Patients who underwent Gamma Knife radiosurgery (GKRS) between January 2016 and November 2019 were prospectively evaluated for QOL using the EQ-5D-3L questionnaire before SRS and at follow-up visits. Only patients who had pre-SRS and at least 1 post-SRS QOL assessment were considered.

RESULTS

Fifty-four cancer patients underwent 109 GKRS procedures. The first post-SRS visit was at a median of 2.59 months (range 0.13–21.08 months), and the last post-SRS visit was at 14.72 months (range 2.52–45.21 months) after SRS. There was no statistically significant change in the EQ-5D index score (p = 0.539) at the first compared with last post-SRS visit. The proportion of patients reporting some problems on the EQ-5D dimension of self-care increased during the course of follow-up from 9% (pre-SRS visit) to 18% (last post-SRS visit; p = 0.03). The proportion of patients reporting problems on the EQ-5D dimensions of mobility, usual activities, pain/discomfort, and anxiety/depression remained stable during the course of follow-up (p ≥ 0.106). After adjusting for clinical variables, a higher recursive partitioning analysis (RPA) class (i.e., worse prognostic category) was independently associated with greater odds for EQ-5D index score deterioration (p = 0.050). Upfront whole-brain radiation therapy predicted deterioration of the EQ-5D self-care (p = 0.03) and usual activities (p = 0.024) dimensions, while a greater number of lesions predicted deterioration of the EQ-5D anxiety/depression dimension (p = 0.008). A lower pre-SRS EQ-5D index was associated with shorter survival independently from clinical and demographic variables (OR 18.956, 95% CI 2.793–128.64; p = 0.003).

CONCLUSIONS

QOL is largely preserved in brain metastasis patients treated with SRS. Higher RPA class, upfront whole-brain radiation therapy, and greater intracranial disease burden are independent predictors of post-SRS QOL deterioration. Worse pre-SRS QOL predicts shorter survival. Assessment of QOL is recommended in brain metastasis patients managed with SRS.

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Adomas Bunevicius, Darrah Sheehan, Mary Lee Vance, David Schlesinger and Jason P. Sheehan

OBJECTIVE

Stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) is used for the management of residual or recurrent Cushing’s disease (CD). Increasing experience and technological advancements of Gamma Knife radiosurgery (GKRS) systems can impact the outcomes of CD patients. The authors evaluated the association of their center’s growing experience and the era in which GKRS was performed with treatment success and adverse events in patients with CD.

METHODS

The authors studied consecutive patients with CD treated with GKRS at the University of Virginia since installation of the first Gamma Knife system in March 1989 through August 2019. They compared endocrine remission and complication rates between patients treated before 2000 (early cohort) and those who were treated in 2000 and later (contemporary cohort).

RESULTS

One hundred thirty-four patients with CD underwent GKRS during the study period: 55 patients (41%) comprised the early cohort, and 79 patients (59%) comprised the contemporary cohort. The contemporary cohort, compared with the early cohort, had a significantly greater treatment volume, radiation prescription dose, maximal dose to the optic chiasm, and number of isocenters, and they more often had cavernous sinus involvement. Endocrine remission rates were higher in the contemporary cohort when compared with the early cohort (82% vs 66%, respectively; p = 0.01). In a Cox regression analysis adjusted for demographic, clinical, and SRS characteristics, the contemporary GKRS cohort had a higher probability of endocrine remission than the early cohort (HR 1.987, 95% CI 1.234–3.199; p = 0.005). The tumor control rate, incidence of cranial nerve neuropathy, and new anterior pituitary deficiency were similar between the two groups.

CONCLUSIONS

Technological advancements over the years and growing center experience were important factors for improved endocrine remission rates in patients with CD. Technological aspects and results of contemporary Gamma Knife systems should be considered when counseling patients, planning treatment, and reporting treatment results. Studies exploring the learning curve for GKRS are warranted.

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Martin H. Weiss, Gabriel Zada, John D. Carmichael and William T. Couldwell

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Adomas Bunevicius, Hideyuki Kano, Cheng-Chia Lee, Michal Krsek, Ahmed M. Nabeel, Amr El-Shehaby, Khaled Abdel Karim, Nuria Martinez-Moreno, David Mathieu, John Y. K. Lee, Inga Grills, Douglas Kondziolka, Roberto Martinez-Alvarez, Wael A. Reda, Roman Liscak, Yan-Hua Su, L. Dade Lunsford, Mary Lee Vance and Jason P. Sheehan

OBJECTIVE

The optimal time to perform stereotactic radiosurgery after incomplete resection of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH)–producing pituitary adenoma in patients with Cushing’s disease (CD) remains unclear. In patients with persistent CD after resection of ACTH-producing pituitary adenoma, the authors evaluated the association of the interval between resection and Gamma Knife radiosurgery (GKRS) with outcomes.

METHODS

Pooled data from 10 institutions participating in the International Radiosurgery Research Foundation were used in this study.

RESULTS

Data from 255 patients with a mean follow-up of 65.59 ± 49.01 months (mean ± SD) were analyzed. Seventy-seven patients (30%) underwent GKRS within 3 months; 46 (18%) from 4 to 6 months; 34 (13%) from 7 to 12 months; and 98 (38%) at > 12 months after the resection. Actuarial endocrine remission rates were higher in patients who underwent GKRS ≤ 3 months than when treatment was > 3 months after the resection (78% and 65%, respectively; p = 0.017). Endocrine remission rates were lower in patients who underwent GKRS at > 12 months versus ≤ 12 months after the resection (57% vs 76%, respectively; p = 0.006). In multivariate Cox regression analyses adjusted for clinical and treatment characteristics, early GKRS was associated with increased probability of endocrine remission (hazard ratio [HR] 1.518, 95% CI 1.039–2.218; p = 0.031), whereas late GKRS (HR 0.641, 95% CI 0.448–0.919; p = 0.015) was associated with reduced probability of endocrine remission. The incidence of some degree of new pituitary deficiency (p = 0.922), new visual deficits (p = 0.740), and other cranial nerve deficits (p = 0.610) was not significantly related to time from resection to GKRS.

CONCLUSIONS

Early GKRS is associated with an improved endocrine remission rate, whereas later GKRS is associated with a lower rate of endocrine remission after pituitary adenoma resection. Early GKRS should be considered for patients with CD after incomplete pituitary adenoma resection.