Neurosurgery 1995 Oct;37(4):655-66; discussion 666-7
Department of Neurosurgery, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA.
A detailed outcome analysis was performed on 40 children with intracranial ependymomas treated at our institution between 1975 and 1993 to identify those factors that were predictive of overall and progression-free survival. Three patients (7.5%) who were treated in the first 5 years of the study died within 3 months of surgery and were excluded from further outcome assessments. Eight (22%) of the 37 patients who survived the perioperative period had evidence of leptomeningeal dissemination at presentation, on the basis of either imaging (three children) and/or cytological (six children) results. The 5- and 10-year progression-free survival rates among these 37 patients were 45.1 and 36.1%, respectively; overall survival rates were 57.1 and 45.0%, respectively. The site of progression was local in 17 of 19 patients with progressive disease. Three factors were found to have a significant association (P < or = 0.05) with the outcome on both univariate and multivariate analyses: 1) the extent of the resection, 2) the age of the patient at diagnosis, and 3) the duration of the symptoms before diagnosis. The 5-year progression-free and overall survivals were 8.9 and 22%, respectively, among patients who had evidence of residual disease on postoperative imaging studies, compared with 68 and 80% rates among patients with no apparent residual disease (P = 0.0001 and P < 0.0001, respectively). Patients younger than 3 years fared significantly worse than older children (5-year progression-free and overall survival rates of 12 and 22%, respectively, in the younger children versus 60 and 75% in older children (P = 0.003 and P = 0.01, respectively). In addition, patients with a duration of symptoms before diagnosis of < 1 month had a worse outcome than those with a more protracted course (5-year progression-free and overall survival rates of 33 and 33%, respectively, versus rates of 53 and 64%, respectively (P = 0.02 for both). Neither the finding of evidence for dissemination at presentation nor the detection of anaplastic histological features (e.g., dense cellularity or high numbers of mitoses) were associated with a significantly worse outcome in this series. The combination of variables that had the strongest association with both favorable and unfavorable outcomes was the combination of the age of the patient and the resection extent. Only 2 of 17 patients older than 3 years with gross total resections have died, whereas 13 of 20 children who were either younger than 3 years or had radiologically incomplete resections have died (P < 0.0001).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)