Targeted Radiosurgery Beats Whole Brain Radiation For Brain Tumor Survival Interview with:

N. Scott Litofsky, M.D. Chief of the Division of Neurological Surgery University of Missouri School of Medicine

Dr. N. Scott Litofsky,

N. Scott Litofsky, M.D.
Chief of the Division of Neurological Surgery
University of Missouri School of Medicine What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Response: Radiosurgery is being used more often for treatment of brain metastases to avoid potential side effects of whole-brain radiation, such as cognition and mobility impairment. After surgical resection of a brain metastases, some radiation treatment is generally needed to control brain disease. Few studies have directly compared efficacy of tumor control between surgery followed by whole-brain radiation and surgery followed by radiosurgery.

Our objective was to compare outcomes in two groups of patients – one whose brain metastasis was treated with surgery followed by whole-brain radiation and one whose surgery was followed by radiosurgery to the post-operative tumor bed.

We found that tumor control was similar for both groups, with survival actually better in the radiosurgery group. The complications of treatment were similar. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Surgery followed by radiosurgery for brain metastases is at least comparable to surgery followed by whole-brain radiation, so in most cases a surgery followed by radiosurgery plan is probably the most appropriate plan for the patient. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: Further study might look at particular tumor types more closely. A prospective study could also eliminate patient selection biases that may be present in our retrospective study. Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: This work was funded by grants to Kristin Scheitler-Ring from the Bob Willis Medical Student Fellowship of the American Brain Tumor Association and a Medical Student Summer Research Fellowship from the University of Missouri School of Medicine Office of Medical Research. Thank you for your contribution to the community.


Kristen Scheitler-Ring, Bin Ge, Greg Petroski, Gregory Biedermann, N. Scott Litofsky.Radiosurgery to the Postoperative Tumor Bed for Metastatic Carcinoma Versus Whole Brain Radiation After Surgery. Cureus, 2016; DOI: 7759/cureus.885

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