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Mary Austin-Seymour, John Munzenrider, Michael Goitein, Lynn Verhey, Marcia Urie, Richard Gentry, Steven Birnbaum, Donna Ruotolo, Patricia McManus, Steven Skates, Robert G. Ojemann, Andrew Rosenberg, Alan Schiller, Andreas Koehler and Herman D. Suit

✓ Sixty-eight patients with chordoma or low-grade chondrosarcoma at the base of the skull received fractionated high-dose postoperative radiation delivered with a 160-MeV proton beam. Protons have favorable physical characteristics which allow the delivery of high doses of radiation to these critically located tumors. The methods employed for these treatments are described. These patients have been followed for at least 17 months and for a median of 34 months. The median tumor dose was 69 CGE (cobalt Gy equivalent): CGE is the dose in proton Gy multiplied by 1.1, which is the relative biological effectiveness for protons compared to cobalt-60. The daily dose was 1.8 to 2.1 CGE. For this group the 5-year actuarial local control rate is 82% and disease-free survival rate is 76%. The incidence of treatment-related morbidity has been acceptable.

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Mary T. Austin, Emma Hamilton, Denna Zebda, Hoang Nguyen, Jan M. Eberth, Yuchia Chang, Linda S. Elting and David I. Sandberg


Health disparities in access to care, early detection, and survival exist among adult patients with cancer. However, there have been few reports assessing how health disparities impact pediatric patients with malignancies. The objective in this study was to examine the impact of racial/ethnic and social factors on disease presentation and outcome for children with primary CNS solid tumors.


The authors examined all children (age ≤ 18 years) in whom CNS solid tumors were diagnosed and who were enrolled in the Texas Cancer Registry between 1995 and 2009 (n = 2421). Geocoded information was used to calculate the driving distance between a patient's home and the nearest pediatric cancer treatment center. Socioeconomic status (SES) was determined using the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality formula and 2007–2011 US Census block group data. Logistic regression was used to determine factors associated with advanced-stage disease. Survival probability and hazard ratios were calculated using life table methods and Cox regression.


Children with advanced-stage CNS solid tumors were more likely to be < 1 year old, Hispanic, and in the lowest SES quartile (all p < 0.05). The adjusted odds ratios of presenting with advanced-stage disease were higher in children < 1 year old compared with children > 10 years old (OR 1.71, 95% CI 1.06–2.75), and in Hispanic patients compared with non-Hispanic white patients (OR 1.56, 95% CI 1.19–2.04). Distance to treatment and SES did not impact disease stage at presentation in the adjusted analysis. Furthermore, 1- and 5-year survival probability were worst in children 1–10 years old, Hispanic patients, non-Hispanic black patients, and those in the lowest SES quartile (p < 0.05). In the adjusted survival model, only advanced disease and malignant behavior were predictive of mortality.


Racial/ethnic disparities are associated with advanced-stage disease presentation for children with CNS solid tumors. Disease stage at presentation and tumor behavior are the most important predictors of survival.

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Thomas A. Gallagher, Veena A. Nair, Michael F. Regner, Brittany M. Young, Andrew Radtke, Joshua Pankratz, Ryan L. Holdsworth, Dovile Baniulis, Nicole K. Kornder, Jed Voss, Benjamin P. Austin, Chad Moritz, Mary E. Meyerand and Vivek Prabhakaran


Functional MRI (fMRI) has proven to be an effective component of pretreatment planning in patients harboring a variety of different brain lesions. The authors have recently reported significant relationships concerning distances between brain tumor borders and areas of functional activation (lesion-to-activation distance; LAD) with regard to patient morbidity and mortality. This study further examines the relationship between LAD, focusing on a host of vascular lesions and pre- and posttreatment morbidity.


This study included a sample population of patients with vascular lesions (n = 106), primarily arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) and cavernomas. These patients underwent pretreatment fMRI-based motor mapping (n = 72) or language mapping (n = 84). The impact of LAD and other variables derived from the patient medical record were analyzed with respect to functional deficits in terms of morbidity (weakness and/or aphasia).


In patients with no pretreatment deficits, there was trend for a significant relationship between the Wernicke area LAD and posttreatment language deficits. In patients with or without pretreatment deficits, a trend toward significance was observed between sensorimotor LAD and posttreatment motor deficits. Additionally, lesion type (AVMs or cavernomas) affected posttreatment deficits, with more patients with cavernomas showing posttreatment language deficits than patients with AVMs. However, this difference was not observed for posttreatment motor deficits.


These findings suggest that the proximity of a vascular lesion to sensorimotor and language areas is a relevant parameter in estimating patient prognosis in the perioperative period. Additionally, vascular lesion type and existence of pretreatment deficits play a significant role in outcomes.

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Oral Presentations

2010 AANS Annual Meeting Philadelphia, Pennsylvania May 1–5, 2010