Poor prognosis despite aggressive treatment in adults with intramedullary spinal cord glioblastoma

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15 Scopus citations


We report our institution's experience with adult patients who underwent surgery for intramedullary spinal cord glioblastoma. Spine involvement of glioblastoma is rare, representing 7.5% of all intramedullary gliomas and 1-3% of all spinal cord tumors. We performed a retrospective review of five male patients with intramedullary spinal cord glioblastoma who underwent surgical resection from 1990 to 2014. Demographic, operative, and postoperative factors were recorded. The median age at treatment was 31 years (range: 18-61) and all men presented with motor or sensory dysfunction. Two had prior surgical resection of an intramedullary World Health Organization Grade III anaplastic astrocytoma lesion with adjuvant chemoradiation. All tumors were present in the cervical (n = 2; 40%) or thoracic (n = 3; 60%) spine, spanning a median of three levels (range: 2-4). Gross total resection was achieved in three men (60%), and there were no intraoperative mortalities or complications. Although one had improvement in his neurological status postoperatively, all five men died with a median time to death of 20 months (range: 2-31). Adult intramedullary spinal cord glioblastoma is rare, and despite aggressive treatment, prognosis is poor, with a median survival in our series of only 20 months. New treatment strategies are necessary to improve survival in this patient population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number6067
Pages (from-to)1628-1631
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Clinical Neuroscience
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2015


  • Adult
  • Glioblastoma
  • Intramedullary
  • Oncology
  • Spine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)


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