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Minimizing side effects from chemoradiation could help brain cancer patients live longer
Date:4/19/2011

PHILADELPHIAMinimizing neurological side effects in patients with high-grade glioma from chemoradiation may result in improved patient survival, a new study from radiation oncologists at the Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson suggests. These findings were reported in the April issue of the British Journal of Cancer.

The researchers found that the occurrence of early side effects, such as fatigue and loss of short-term memory, that manifest during or soon after treatment is significantly associated with both late side effects (after 90 days) and overall survival in patients who suffer from malignant brain tumors, such as glioblastoma.

High-grade glioma patients who did not experience neurological side effects during chemoradiation for the brain cancer were found to have lived 4 months longer compared to those who did experience such effects.

The findings suggest the importance of normal tissue damage in determining long-term survival and how minimizing side effects could end in more positive outcomes.

The team reports their findings from a retrospective analysis of high-grade glioma patients from the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG) database.

"As survival in glioblastoma multiforme increases, the prevention of treatment related side-effects becomes more important," said Yaacov Richard Lawrence, MRCP, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Thomas Jefferson University and director of the Center for Translational Research in Radiation Oncology at Sheba Medical Center in Israel.

"It is generally considered that the only way to improve survival in malignant brain tumors is to more effectively attack the tumor," Dr. Lawrence said. "Fascinatingly, o
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Contact: Steve Graff
stephen.graff@jefferson.edu
215-955-5291
Thomas Jefferson University
Source:Eurekalert

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