Depending on the degree of anaplasia, pineal astrocytomas vary in prognoses. Higher grades have worse prognoses. (Refer to the Astrocytic Tumors section in the Classification section of this summary for more information.)
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Surgery plus radiation therapy for patients with pilocytic or diffuse astrocytoma.[1,2]
Surgery plus radiation therapy and chemotherapy for patients with higher grade tumors.[1,2]
Treatment options under clinical evaluation:
Patients with brain tumors that are either infrequently curable or unresectable should be considered as candidates for clinical trials that evaluate radiosensitizers, hyperthermia, or intraoperative radiation therapy in conjunction with external-beam radiation therapy to improve local control of the tumor. Such patients are also candidates for studies that evaluate new drugs and biological response modifiers following radiation therapy.
Current Clinical Trials
Check for U.S. clinical trials from NCI's list of cancer clinical trials that are now accepting patients with adult pineal gland astrocytoma. The list of clinical trials can be further narrowed by location, drug, intervention, and other criteria.
General information about clinical trials is also available from the NCI Web site.
Stein BM, Fetell MR: Therapeutic modalities for pineal region tumors. Clin Neurosurg 32: 445-55, 1985.
Rich TA, Cassady JR, Strand RD, et al.: Radiation therapy for pineal and suprasellar germ cell tumors. Cancer 55 (5): 932-40, 1985.