Twenty‐nine patients with grade III or IV astrocytomas were treated with 1,3 bis(2‐chloroethyl)‐1‐nitrosourea (BCNU), 75–100 mg/M2 intravenously (IV) for two consecutive days every four to six weeks, in an effort to improve the quality and length of their survival following surgical resection. Twenty‐one of these patients received adjunctive chemotherapy as soon as they recovered from surgery and 18 received concomitant adjunctive radiation therapy as well. Eight patients were treated with radiation therapy after surgery, and BCNU was not added until evidence of tumor growth appeared. BCNU was discontinued and the epipodophyllotoxin. VM‐26, was given at a dose of 100 mg/M2 IV weekly when further tumor growth occurred. Patients receiving adjuvant chemotherapy had a shorter mean and median survival than patients receiving BCNU when progression appeared following radiation therapy. Six patients with progressive disease following surgical resection and radiation therapy for grade 11 astrocytoma were treated with BCNU. Improvement or stabilization of neurologic symptoms occurred in four of these patients. This trial of lower‐dose BCNU therapy produced survival rates similar to higher‐dose studies and permitted fewer physician visits by the patient.
- brain tumor
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