Med in Small Doses - Astrocytoma


This is part of the Med in Small Doses series, which aims to give you a snapshot of a disease or disorder. For information about the series, or common abbreviations click here.

80% of Adult Brain Tumours. Astrocyte Tumour. 40-60yo.

PATHO: Ionising Radiaiton & Familial Syndromes are RFs. A/W Neurofibromatosis.
Low Grade: p53, PDGF-α. High Grade: RB, p16/CDKNaA, & unknown tumour suppressor gene.
Produce oedema → fuzzy contrast border, central necrosis.

Types: Infiltrating & Non-infiltrating Astrocytoma.

High Grade:
  • Analplastic A: ↑ density, ↑ nuclear polymorphism
  • Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM): necrosis & vascular proliferation; can be firm & white OR soft & yellow, glomeruloid bodies.

CFs: Pain, seizure, neuro deficits (location dependant), features of ↑ ICP (headaches, vomiting, visual Δs).
Infants: fullness of frontanelle, dev.delay, hydrocephalus.

Ix: MRI, Myelography, EEG, PET, Biopsy

Tx: Surgical resection (5yr survival over 90% with well resected), XRT, Chemo (high grade, recurrent)
Anticonvulsants (seizures), Mannitol (↓ICP), PT (↑Motor function), OT

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