Six years ago, we began to notice that recurrent oligodendrogliomas, tumors that had regrown after one or more surgeries and radiotherapy, responded to chemotherapy. These tumors were clinically aggressive, contrast-enhancing, histologically anaplastic, and relatively pure. We concluded, after eight consecutive responses (see reference 1 for response criteria),1 that anaplastic oligodendroglioma was a chemosensitive tumor.2 In this article, we review our experience with chemotherapy for this uncommon brain tumor.
Table 1 summarizes the results of treatment for "first" recurrence. We have treated 10 patients, all have responded; two completely and eight partially. Patient 1 responded to carmustine (BCNU), patient 4 to diaziquone (AZQ), the others to a drug combination (PCV) that included procarbazine, lomustine (CCNU), and vincristine.3 (Patient 5 failed to respond to fludarabine, patient 8 to diaziquone; both responded to PCV.) The median duration of response is 15 months (range, 8 to 36 months). All patients have
Cairncross JG, Macdonald DR. Chemotherapy for OligodendrogliomaProgress Report. Arch Neurol. 1991;48(2):225–227. doi:10.1001/archneur.1991.00530140123026