Regression of Recurrent Spinal Cord High-Grade Glioma After Convection-Enhanced Delivery of Nimustine Hydrochloride: Case Reports and Literature Review

Toshiki Endo, Tomoo Inoue, Shinichiro Sugiyama, Ryuta Saito, Teiji Tominaga
Operative Neurosurgery (Hagerstown, Md.) 2019 August 14

BACKGROUND: Spinal cord high-grade glioma has poor prognosis. Especially, no treatment protocols have been established for recurrent cases.

OBJECTIVE: To apply a novel treatment method, convection-enhanced delivery (CED), for recurrent high-grade glioma. CED can deliver chemotherapeutic agents directly into the intramedullary lesion and possibly lead to remarkable regression of enlarging tumors that are, otherwise, difficult to control.

METHODS: Two patients developed high-grade glioma in the thoracic spinal cord. Partial resection and chemotherapy and radiotherapy induced remission of the disease. However, following the initial treatment, recurrence was noted in the spinal cord at 6 and 12 mo, respectively. No effective treatment was available for these recurrent lesions. Therefore, the authors decided to use CED to infuse nimustine hydrochloride (ACNU) directly into the spinal cord. During the procedure, the infusion cannula was inserted into the spinal cord lesion under intraoperative computed tomography scan.

RESULTS: After ACNU CED, successive magnetic resonance imaging confirmed remarkable shrinkages of the tumors in both cases. However, the patient's preinfusion symptoms, including bilateral lower extremity weakness, did not change after the treatment. Importantly, overall survivals of the 2 patients were as long as 67 and 33 mo.

CONCLUSION: The authors report the first 2 cases of recurrent spinal cord high-grade glioma. ACNU CED dramatically regressed enhanced mass lesions and provided local tumor controls in the spinal cord.

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