Improved outcomes associated with maximal extent of resection for butterfly glioblastoma

Acta Neurochirurgica (2021) 163:1883–1894

Butterfly glioblastomas (bGBMs) are grade IV gliomas that infiltrate the corpus callosum and spread to bilateral cerebral hemispheres. Due to the rarity of cases, there is a dearth of information in existing literature. Herein, we evaluate clinical and genetic characteristics, associated predictors, and survival outcomes in an institutional series and compare them to a national cohort.

Methods We identified all adult patients with bGBM treated at Brigham & Women’s Hospital (2008–2018). The National Cancer Database (NCDB) was also queried for bGBM patients. Survival was analyzed with Kaplan–Meier methods, and Cox models were built to assess for predictive factors.

Results Of 993 glioblastoma patients, 62 cases (6.2%) of bGBM were identified. Craniotomy for resection was attempted in 26 patients (41.9%), with a median volumetric extent of resection (vEOR) of 72.3% (95% confidence interval [95%CI] 58.3–82.1). The IDH1 R132H mutation was detected in two patients (3.2%), and MGMT promoter was methylated in 55.5% of the assessed cases. In multivariable regression, factors predictive of longer OS were increased vEOR, MGMT promoter methylation, and receipt of adjuvant therapy. Median OS for the resected cases was 11.5 months (95%CI 7.7–18.8) vs. 6.3 (95%CI 5.1–8.9) for the biopsied. Of 21,353 GBMs, 719 (3.37%) bGBM patients were identified in the NCDB. Resection was more likely to be pursued in recent years, and GTR was independently associated with prolonged OS (p < 0.01).

Conclusion Surgical resection followed by adjuvant chemoradiation is associated with significant survival gains and should be pursued in carefully selected bGBM patients.

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