Glioblastoma: How fast do they grow?
A 57 year old female presented with new onset seizure. An MRI was obtained showing a lesion in the right frontal/parietal region. You can see there is some mass effect, slight effacement of the ventricle, and a whiff of enhancement. Needle biopsy returned astrocytoma, WHO Grade 3.
Surgical resection was recommended, but the patient chose instead to pursue external beam radiation and oral chemotherapy in the form of temozolomide.
Unfortunately, she now presents three months later with confusion, agitation, and left arm weakness. An MRI is again obtained. The tumor shows marked growth and different signal characteristics. You see that the mass is inhomogeneously enhancing, with marked mass effect, surrounding edema, ventricular effacement, and minimal midline shift.
At this time the patient requests craniotomy for surgical debulking. The final pathologic diagnosis is Glioblastoma, WHO Grade 4.
This shows how rapidly a glioma can grow and transform to a higher grade, in this case just three months.