Glioblastoma treatment often involves a combination of therapies. Surgery is usually one of the most important aspects of treatment, although it is rarely used alone. Because glioblastomas grow very quickly, they are often difficult to remove in their entirety. Therefore, surgery is performed with the goal of achieving a maximum safe resection – removing as much of the tumor as possible while preserving the patient’s brain function and sparing healthy tissues. Residual cancer cells can be targeted with additional treatments, such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy, after surgery. Because this multispecialty approach can cause a number of side effects, steroids are often provided as another essential part of glioblastoma treatment, used to help alleviate the side effects of other therapies.
For patients who undergo surgery, an MRI is taken several days after the operation to serve as a “baseline measurement.” This allows oncologists to determine how well follow-up treatments are working and whether any changes are necessary. At Moffitt Cancer Center, a tumor board meets each week to review each patient’s case and determine if different glioblastoma treatment options should be considered.
At Moffitt, we have access to a number of advanced imaging technologies that enable us to pinpoint the precise location of a patient’s tumor and recommend the best options for glioblastoma treatment. The options that we offer include:
- Awake craniotomies, laser ablation and other procedures designed to remove cancerous lesions and alleviate pressure within the skull without causing neurological damage
- Radiation therapy, including intensity-modulated radiation therapy, proton beam therapy, photodynamic therapy and stereotactic radiosurgery, which destroys cancerous cells with targeted beams of radiation
- Chemotherapy, including oral medications and drugs that are injected directly into the intrathecal space in the spine so as to minimize their effects on healthy tissues
- Biological therapies, immunotherapies, genetic therapies and hormone therapies, as well as clinical trials
At Moffitt, all of our patients receive tailored glioblastoma treatment recommendations based on the size, stage, cell type and positioning of their tumors. Because we create treatment plans on a case-by-case basis, we can also account for factors such as a patient’s age and personal preferences. Additionally, we understand that every minute counts – especially with fast-growing cancers like glioblastomas. We expedite the path to treatment as much as possible so that our patients can focus on getting well.
Referrals are not necessary to come to Moffitt. To learn more about our approach to glioblastoma treatment or to make an appointment with the experts in our Neuro-Oncology Program, call 1-888-MOFFITT or submit a new patient registration form online.