Predictors of clinical outcome in pediatric oligodendroglioma: Meta-Analysis of individual patient data and multiple imputation

Kevin Yuqi Wang, Emilian R. Vankov, Doris Da May Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE Oligodendroglioma is a rare primary CNS neoplasm in the pediatric population, and only a limited number of studies in the literature have characterized this entity. Existing studies are limited by small sample sizes and discrepant interstudy findings in identified prognostic factors. In the present study, the authors aimed to increase the statistical power in evaluating for potential prognostic factors of pediatric oligodendrogliomas and sought to reconcile the discrepant findings present among existing studies by performing an individual-patient-data (IPD) meta-Analysis and using multiple imputation to address data not directly available from existing studies. METHODS A systematic search was performed, and all studies found to be related to pediatric oligodendrogliomas and associated outcomes were screened for inclusion. Each study was searched for specific demographic and clinical characteristics of each patient and the duration of event-free survival (EFS) and overall survival (OS). Given that certain demographic and clinical information of each patient was not available within all studies, a multivariable imputation via chained equations model was used to impute missing data after the mechanism of missing data was determined. The primary end points of interest were hazard ratios for EFS and OS, as calculated by the Cox proportional-hazards model. Both univariate and multivariate analyses were performed. The multivariate model was adjusted for age, sex, tumor grade, mixed pathologies, extent of resection, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, tumor location, and initial presentation. A p value of less than 0.05 was considered statistically significant. RESULTS A systematic search identified 24 studies with both time-To-event and IPD characteristics available, and a total of 237 individual cases were available for analysis. A median of 19.4% of the values among clinical, demographic, and outcome variables in the compiled 237 cases were missing. Multivariate Cox regression analysis revealed subtotal resection (p = 0.007 [EFS] and 0.043 [OS]), initial presentation of headache (p = 0.006 [EFS] and 0.004 [OS]), mixed pathologies (p = 0.005 [EFS] and 0.049 [OS]), and location of the tumor in the parietal lobe (p = 0.044 [EFS] and 0.030 [OS]) to be significant predictors of tumor progression or recurrence and death. CONCLUSIONS The use of IPD meta-Analysis provides a valuable means for increasing statistical power in investigations of disease entities with a very low incidence. Missing data are common in research, and multiple imputation is a flexible and valid approach for addressing this issue, when it is used conscientiously. Undergoing subtotal resection, having a parietal tumor, having tumors with mixed pathologies, and suffering headaches at the time of diagnosis portended a poorer prognosis in pediatric patients with oligodendroglioma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)153-163
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2018


  • Meta-Analysis
  • Multiple imputation
  • Oligodendroglioma
  • Oncology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Clinical Neurology


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