Science Times: Do Corticosteroids Compromise Survival in Glioblastoma?

Steroids are very commonly administered concurrently with temozolomide and radiotherapy after the initial surgical resection of glioblastoma (GBM) to control neurological morbidity. Although the potent anti-inflammatory effect of steroids is well documented to ameliorate vasogenic edema in these tumors, the deleterious effects of steroids on the efficacy of alkylating agents or radiotherapy have been a matter of debate.1-4 Controlled clinical trials directly addressing the matter are not currently available. Although such controlled clinical trials would be ideal to address this question, a recent study by Pitter et al,5 published in Brain and combining retrospective clinical data, genomic data, and preclinical animal model data, casts reasonable doubt on the indications of steroid administration concomitant with chemotherapy and radiation in patients with GBM.

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