Chemotherapy alone very rarely cures low-grade gliomas.
Chemotherapy is often used in young patients to delay radiation therapy (RT) and reduce the severity of RT induced late effects.
Chemotherapy has the ability to either stabilize disease or cause tumor regression4.
Chemotherapy may also shrink hypothalamic tumors in children. It allows for weight gain in those who have tumor-induced diencephalic syndrome.
Several combinations of drugs can be used to stabilize or shrink gliomas. Such pairings include:
Packer and colleagues treated patients with newly diagnosed progressive disease and patients with recurrent disease using concurrent carboplatin and vincristine in a 10-week induction phase, followed by 48 weeks of maintenance carboplatin/vincristine on a slightly modified schedule for patients who had responded or had stable disease after induction. There was a progression-free survival (PFS) of 75% at 2 years and 68% at 3 years. Children aged 5 years or younger had better response rates.