Surgery of Insular Nonenhancing Gliomas: Volumetric Analysis of Tumoral Resection, Clinical Outcome, and Survival in a Consecutive Series of 66 Cases

Neurosurgery 70:1081–1094, 2012.  DOI: 10.1227/NEU.0b013e31823f5be5

Despite intraoperative technical improvements, the insula remains a challenging area for surgery because of its critical relationships with vascular and neurophysiological functional structures.
OBJECTIVE: To retrospectively investigate the morbidity profile in insular nonenhancing gliomas, with special emphasis on volumetric analysis of tumoral resection.

METHODS: From 2000 to 2010, 66 patients underwent surgery. All surgical procedures were conducted under cortical-subcortical stimulation and neurophysiological monitor- ing. Volumetric scan analysis was applied on T2-weighted magnetic resonance images (MRIs) to establish preoperative and postoperative tumoral volume.

RESULTS: The median preoperative tumor volume was 108 cm3. The median extent of resection was 80%. The median follow-up was 4.3 years. An immediate postoperative worsening was detected in 33.4% of cases; a definitive worsening resulted in 6% of cases. Patients with extent of resection of . 90% had an estimated 5-year overall survival rate of 92%, whereas those with extent of resection between 70% and 90% had a 5-year overall survival rate of 82% (P , .001). The difference between preoperative tumoral volumes on T2-weighted MRI and on postcontrast T1-weighted MRI ([T2 2 T1] MRI volume) was computed to evaluate the role of the diffusive tumoral growing pattern on overall survival. Patients with preoperative volumetric difference , 30 cm3 demonstrated a 5-year overall survival rate of 92%, whereas those with a difference of . 30 cm3 had a 5-year overall survival rate of 57% (P = .02).

CONCLUSION: With intraoperative cortico-subcortical mapping and neurophysiologi- cal monitoring, a major resection is possible with an acceptable risk and a significant result in the follow-up.