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Dueng-Yuan Hueng and Yu-Chin An

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Samer K. Elbabaa, Murat Gokden, John R. Crawford, Santosh Kesari and Ali G. Saad

Object

Radiation-associated meningiomas (RAMs) arise after treatment with radiation to the cranium and are recognized as clinically separate from sporadic meningiomas. Compared with their sporadic counterparts, RAMs are often aggressive or malignant, likely to be multiple, and have a high recurrence rate. However, limited information exists about the clinical, pathological, and cytogenetic features of RAMs in pediatric patients. The authors report the findings in 9 children with meningiomas following therapeutic radiation to the cranium. In addition, they performed a critical review of the English language literature on pediatric RAMs.

Methods

Medical files were searched for patients who demonstrated meningiomas after a history of radiation to the brain. Only those patients in whom a meningioma occurred before the age of 18 years were included in this study. Clinical and demographic data along with the MIB-1 labeling index and cytogenetic studies were evaluated.

Results

The patients consisted of 5 males and 4 females with a median age of 5 years (range 2–10 years) at radiation therapy. The latency period was a median of 10 years after radiation therapy (range 6–13 years). The MIB-1 labeling index was a median of 6.6% (range 4%–10%). Five patients (55.6%) displayed multiple meningiomas at the first presentation. Histological types included clear cell meningioma in 1 patient, fibroblastic meningioma in 2, chordoid meningioma in 2, meningothelial meningioma in 7 (atypical in 2 cases), xanthomatous meningioma in 1, and chordoid meningioma in 1. Cytogenetic studies showed that the loss of 22q12.2 was the most common abnormality (3 patients), followed by complex cytogenetic abnormalities (2 patients) and rearrangements between chromosomes 1 and 12 (1 patient) and a 1p deletion (1 patient).

Conclusions

In contrast to RAMs occurring in adults, those in pediatric patients show an increased incidence of multiplicity on first presentation and unusual histological variants, some of which are described here for the first time. There was no difference in the MIB-1 labeling index in children with RAMs as compared with that in children with non-RAMs.

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Daniel Ikeda and E. Antonio Chiocca

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Andrew Shaw and E. Antonio Chiocca

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Ning Lin, Ian F. Dunn, Michael Glantz, Dana L. Allison, Randy Jensen, Mark D. Johnson, Robert M. Friedlander and Santosh Kesari

Object

Neoplastic meningitis (NM) is a debilitating and increasingly frequent neurological complication of cancer characterized by infiltration of tumor cells into the leptomeninges and the subarachnoid space. Although NM is rarely curable, combined intrathecal chemotherapy and focal radiation can improve disease-related symptoms and survival. Hydrocephalus occurs in a significant proportion of patients, is associated with poor prognosis and reduced quality of life, and usually precludes the use of intrathecal therapy.

Methods

Since January of 2005, the authors have used a combined treatment approach for patients with both NM and hydrocephalus that employs a subcutaneously placed reservoir connected in series to an on/off valve and a ventriculoperitoneal shunt for both diversion of CSF and injection of intrathecal chemotherapy. They conducted a retrospective, case-controlled study from 2 independent institutions to review their experience.

Results

Twenty-four patients with NM and hydrocephalus underwent placement of a CSF reservoir-on/off valve-ventriculoperitoneal shunt (RO-VPS) construct. There was no perioperative mortality, and there were only 2 minor complications. One shunt failure and no shunt-associated infections were observed over a median of 28 weeks of follow-up. Symptomatic improvement and improved performance status were seen in 20 patients (83.3%) and were sustained over 6 months. Eighteen patients received intraventricular chemotherapy without unexpected toxicity, and cytological responses were found in 11 patients (61.1%). Median progression-free and overall survival was 14 and 31 weeks, respectively. Compared with a contemporaneous comparison group of 24 demographically matched patients with NM who underwent CSF reservoir placement only, those who received RO-VPS constructs (p = 0.02) and had primary diagnosis of breast cancer (p = 0.04) had significant advantage in overall survival.

Conclusions

A combined RO-VPS system is safe and practical to install, results in symptomatic improvement in most patients, and allows uncomplicated and effective administration of intrathecal chemotherapy in patients with NM. Cerebrospinal fluid diversion surgery should be considered in NM patients in conjunction with intrathecal and systemic treatments.

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Marlon G. Saria, Courtney Corle, Jethro Hu, Jeremy D. Rudnick, Surasak Phuphanich, Maciej M. Mrugala, Laura K. Crew, Daniela A. Bota, Beverly Dan Fu, Ryan Y. Kim, Tiffany Brown, Homira Feely, Joanne Brechlin, Bradley D. Brown, Jan Drappatz, Patrick Y. Wen, Clark C. Chen, Bob Carter, Jong Woo Lee and Santosh Kesari

Object

The object of this study was to determine the tolerability and activity of lacosamide in patients with brain tumors.

Methods

The authors reviewed the medical records at 5 US academic medical centers with tertiary brain tumor programs, seeking all patients in whom a primary brain tumor had been diagnosed and who were taking lacosamide.

Results

The authors identified 70 patients with primary brain tumors and reviewed seizure frequency and toxicities. The majority of the patients had gliomas (96%). Fifty-five (78%) had partial seizures only, and 12 (17%) had generalized seizures. Most of the patients (74%) were started on lacosamide because of recurrent seizures. Forty-six patients (66%) reported a decrease in seizure frequency, and 21 patients (30%) reported stable seizures. Most of the patients (54 [77%]) placed on lacosamide did not report any toxicities.

Conclusions

This retrospective analysis demonstrated that lacosamide was both well tolerated and active as an add-on antiepileptic drug (AED) in patients with brain tumors. Lacosamide's novel mechanism of action will allow for concurrent use with other AEDs, as documented by its activity across many different types of AEDs used in this patient population. Larger prospective studies are warranted.