Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Glioblastoma Multiforme Treatment

Treatment for of glioblastoma multiforme varies with tumor size and position in the brain. Treatment measures usually include some combination of surgery, corticosteroid medications, anticonvulsants, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy.

Treatment for glioblastoma multiforme includes:

Glioblastoma Multiforme Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy can be used for glioblastoma multiforme when surgery and radiation therapy have not been successful.

Drugs that are used in the treatment of glioblastoma multiforme include:

Glioblastoma Multiforme Questions For Doctor

The following are some important questions to ask before and after the treatment of glioblastoma multiforme.

Questions to ask before treatment:

  • What are my treatment options?
    • Is surgery an option for me?
  • What are the risks associated with treatment?
  • Do I need to stay in the hospital?
    • How long will I be in the hospital?
  • What are the complications I should watch for?
  • How long will I be on medication?
  • What are the potential side effects of my medication?
  • Does my medication interact with nonprescription medicines or supplements?
  • Should I take my medication with food?

Questions to ask after treatment:
  • Do I need to change my diet?
  • Are there any medications or supplements I should avoid?
  • When can I resume my normal activities?
  • When can I return to work?
  • Do I need a special exercise program?
  • Will I need physical therapy?
  • Will I need occupational therapy?
  • Will I need speech therapy?
  • What else can I do to reduce my risk for complications?
  • Are my children at risk for this condition?
  • How often will I need to see my doctor for checkups?
  • What local support and other resources are available?

Glioblastoma Multiforme Radiation Therapy

Radiation therapy can be an effective treatment for glioblastoma multiforme.

Radiation therapy uses a highly-focused dose of radiation directed at a small area of the brain tumor. It requires specialized scanning equipment, and 3-dimensional imaging. Another name for this method is a gamma knife.

Gamma knife devices allow doctors to deliver a precise dose of radiation to the tumor, with a minimal effect on surrounding brain tissue.

Complications of radiation therapy may include:

Glioblastoma Multiforme Specialist

Physicians from the following specialties evaluate and treat glioblastoma multiforme:

Glioblastoma Multiforme Surgery

Whenever possible, treatment of glioblastoma multiforme should include surgery to remove the entire cancer. Following surgery, radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy may be used to decrease the risk of recurrence. Some tumors are deeply embedded in the brain and surrounded by vital structures or blood vessels. This makes many tumors impossible to remove without damaging other parts of the brain.

Some glioblastoma multiforme may require the placement of a ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunt to correct hydrocephalus (increased fluid pressure inside the brain). A VP shunt is a tube that drains extra fluid from around the brain, into the abdominal cavity. The tube runs from the head to the abdomen, under the skin.

Continue to Glioblastoma Multiforme Home Care

Last Updated: Dec 14, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Glioblastoma Multiforme References
  1. Demir MK, Hakan T, Akinci O, Berkman Z. Primary cerebellar glioblastoma multiforme. Diagn Interv Radiol. 2005 Jun;11(2):83-6. [15957093]
  2. Grossman SA, Batara JF. Current management of glioblastoma multiforme. Semin Oncol. 2004 Oct;31(5):635-44. [15497116]
  3. Parsa AT, Wachhorst S, Lamborn KR, Prados MD, McDermott MW, Berger MS, Chang SM. Prognostic significance of intracranial dissemination of glioblastoma multiforme in adults. J Neurosurg. 2005 Apr;102(4):622-8. [15871503]
  4. Stark AM, Nabavi A, Mehdorn HM, Blomer U. Glioblastoma multiforme-report of 267 cases treated at a single institution. Surg Neurol. 2005 Feb;63(2):162-9. [1568066]
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