Proton spectroscopy can noninvasively provide useful information on brain tumor type and grade. Short- (30 ms) and long- (136 ms) echo time (TE) (1)H spectra were acquired from normal white matter (NWM), meningiomas, grade II astrocytomas, anaplastic astrocytomas, glioblastomas, and metastases. Very low myo-Inositol ([mI]) and creatine ([Cr]) were characteristic of meningiomas, and high [mI] characteristic of grade II astrocytomas. Tumor choline ([Cho]) was greater than NWM and increased with grade for grade II and anaplastic astrocytomas, but was highly variable for glioblastomas. Higher [Cho] and [Cr] correlated with low lipid and lactate (P < 0.05), indicating a dilution of metabolite concentrations due to necrosis in high-grade tumors. Metabolite peak area ratios showed no correlation with lipids and mI/Cho (at TE = 30 ms), and Cr/Cho (at TE = 136 ms) best correlated with tumor grade. The quantified lipid, macromolecule, and lactate levels increased with grade of tumor, consistent with progression from hypoxia to necrosis. Quantification of lipids and macromolecules at short TE provided a good marker for tumor grade, and a scatter plot of the sum of alanine, lactate, and delta 1.3 lipid signals vs. mI/Cho provided a simple way to separate most tumors by type and grade.
Craniopharyngiomas are rare, mainly sellar/parasellar, epithelial tumors diagnosed during childhood or adult life. Histologically, two primary subtypes have been recognized (adamantinomatous and papillary) with an as yet, unclarified pathogenesis. They may present with a variety of manifestations (neurological, visual, and hypothalamo-pituitary). Despite their benign histological appearance, they often show an unpredictable growth pattern, which, combined with the lack of randomized studies, poses significant difficulties in the establishment of an optimal therapeutic protocol. This should focus on the prevention of recurrence(s), improvement of survival, reduction of the significant disease and treatment-related morbidity (endocrine, visual, hypothalamic, neurobehavioral, and cognitive), and preservation of the quality of life. Currently, surgical excision followed by external beam irradiation, in cases of residual tumor, is the main treatment option. Intracystic irradiation or bleomycin, stereotactic radiosurgery, or radiotherapy and systemic chemotherapy are alternative approaches; their place in the management plan remains to be assessed in adequately powered long-term trials. Apart from the type of treatment, the identification of clinical and imaging parameters that will predict patients with a better prognosis is difficult. The central registration of patients with these challenging tumors may provide correlates between treatments and outcomes and establish prognostic factors at the pathological or molecular level that may further guide us in the future.
Objective: Somatotroph adenomas causing acromegaly are histologically classified into densely granulated (DG) and sparsely granulated (SG) subtypes with different morphology, clinical characteristics and treatment outcomes. Granulation pattern has been reported to co-segregate with a recurrent mutation at codon 49 in growth hormone receptor (GHR) and GSP oncogene. This study examines response to the octreotide suppression test (OST) in relation to granulation pattern and mutation in GHR and GSP. Design: This is a retrospective, single-centre study of 52 patients with pathologically confirmed somatotroph adenoma who were naïve to medical therapy presenting between January 2001 and October 2010. Methods: Clinical, radiological and hormonal data at diagnosis were recorded. GHR and GSP were genotyped, granulation pattern determined and response to the OST measured. Results: SG adenomas were larger (PZ0.038), occurred in younger patients (PZ0.029), were more common in females (PZ0.026) and were more invasive (P!0.0001 and PZ0.001), with diminished responses to the OST (PZ0.007) compared with DG adenomas. GSP mutation was unrelated to granulation pattern but associated with smaller tumours (PZ0.027), producing more GH (PZ0.048) that responded better to the OST (PZ0.022). Codon 49 of GHR was not mutated. Conclusions: Adenoma histological phenotype, not genotype, corresponds to clinical and biochemical characteristics and response to the OST. SG adenomas constitute a clinically more unfavourable subtype but are not associated with GHR mutations in our series. Ascertainment of the adenoma subtype may become an important consideration in the management of acromegaly.
Background: Non-functioning pituitary adenomas (NFAs) are slow-growing tumours with reported re-growth rates following surgical resection alone of up to 50% at 10 years. Currently, the desired length of follow-up surveillance imaging in un-irradiated patients is unclear. Aim: To clarify the timing of re-growth in patients with NFAs, treated solely by surgery without post-operative pituitary radiotherapy, and also to clarify whether continued imaging is necessary in these patients. Methods: A case note analysis of all patients who underwent surgery alone for NFA between January 1984 and December 2007 was undertaken. Patients were followed for a minimum of 1 year. Re-growth was diagnosed on the basis of radiological appearances with or without associated manifestations. Results: One hundred and fifty-five patients (94 males, mean age at diagnosis 57.9 (range 18.3-88) years) were included. Twenty-nine were followed up for more than 10 years. The mean follow-up following surgery was 6.1 years (median 4.3 (range 1-25.8)). Re-growth was documented in 54 (34.8%) cases and 20.4% of these cases showed relapse/re-growth 10 or more years after the initial surgery. Kaplan-Meier analysis showed relapse rates of 23.1, 46.7 and 67.9% at 5, 10 and 15 years respectively. There was a significant increase in the re-growth rates if there was either pituitary tumour remnant observed on the first post-operative scan (P%0.001) or a younger age at initial surgery (PZ0.034). Conclusion: These results suggest that patients with NFAs need to be closely monitored following surgery, particularly those with post-operative tumour remnants. With 20% of relapse occurring after 10 years, follow-up surveillance needs to be continued beyond this time.
The 'watch and wait' policy seems reasonable for microadenomas but is probably not a safe approach for macroadenomas, which appear to have a significant growth potential; in these cases, given the lack of established medical treatment, the decision for surgical intervention should balance the presence of significant comorbidities and the anaesthetic/peri-operative risks at presentation against the probability of tumour enlargement and its consequences, as well as the possible loss of advantages associated with early operation.
The incidence of nonsurgical CSF rhinorrhea in MPRL patients (8.7%) is higher than expected. Dopamine agonist resistance is more common in MPRLs with CSF rhinorrhea; however, whether this is a mechanistic relationship requires further study. Protease-activated receptor 1 expression, e-cadherin expression, and macrophage infiltration rates do not distinguish tumors with from those without CSF rhinorrhea.
In this study the authors suggest that MR neurography is an effective means of both confirming compression of the median nerve and its successful surgical decompression in patients with carpal tunnel syndrome. This modality may prove useful in the assessment of unconfirmed or complex cases of carpal tunnel syndrome both before and after surgery.
Overall, the health-related QoL and perception of subjective health in patients with NFA was not compromised to any major extent suggesting that we can now offer the prospect of treatment and replacement, which will provide a normal or near-normal QoL. Specific groups are affected in various dimensions, necessitating measures to compensate for predisposing factors.
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