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The purpose of this study is to clarify whether gross total tumor resection can prolong the survival in adult patients with supratentorial glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), and to clarify what subset of these patients obtains a survival advantage by gross total tumor resection without postoperative neurological deterioration.Eighty-two adult patients with supratentorial GBM were retrospectively reviewed. Overall, the median survival time was 13 months, and the 1- and 2-year survival rates were 53.7% and 14.6%, respectively. In a univariate analysis for survival rate by log-rank test, age (<40 years), Karnofsky performance scale (KPS) score (70-100%) and extent of surgery (gross total resection) were revealed to be significant good prognostic factors. A Cox proportional hazard multivariate regression analysis confirmed that the KPS and extent of surgery were independent, significant good prognostic factors. Nine patients (11%) suffered postoperative neurological deterioration.A topographical GBM staging system (Stages I, II and III) with the integration of tumor location, size and eloquence of adjacent brain based on MRI (for explanation of Stages see text) was originally proposed. In Stage I, gross total resection had a strong tendency toward a better prognostic factor in a univariate analysis and was revealed to be a significant independent good prognostic factor in a multivariate analysis. In also Stage II, the survival of patients who underwent gross total resection was better than that of patients with less than gross total resection, although not significant. In Stage III, there were no patients who underwent gross total tumor resection. Risk probabilities of postoperative neurological deterioration, overall, were 0%, 22.2%, and 20% in Stages I, II, and III, respectively, and those after gross total resection were 0% and 16.7% in Stages I and II, respectively.Although gross total tumor resection is associated with prolongation of the survival time of patients with GBM, the risk of postoperative neurological deficit increases with radical tumor resection. To select an eligible subset of patients that benefit in survival from gross total tumor resection without postoperative risk, the following surgical policy for GBM resection is suggested. GBM in Stage I should be resected as radically as possible. Regarding Stage II, risky surgical resection extending to the area adjacent to the critical zone should be avoided and more meticulous and careful surgical planning is needed than that in Stage I. In Stage III, radical gross total tumor resection is not recommended at present.