While funding may be limited to pursue these primary QOL research goals, efforts should be made to incorporate QOL research as secondary end points into ongoing therapy trials. Few trials have done this to date, 94 although the potential impact of QOL on survival and prognosis makes incorporation of QOL end points especially important.
QOL in brain tumor patients is complex and multidimensional in nature, with symptoms having interrelationships with each other as well as patient, tumor, and treatment factors. Assessing QOL is challenging given the scarcity of well-validated instruments, difficulty with compliance especially in longitudinal measurements over time, and the lack of well-designed trials. Assessing QOL in brain tumor patients is additionally complicated by the relative rarity of the disease compared to other malignancies, functional limitations to self-reporting, and concurrent medications such as steroids and antiepileptics.
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Despite these limitations, some conclusions can be made regarding QOL studied to date on brain tumor patients. Specifically, the burden of symptoms that affect QOL is significant, but understudied. There are limited therapeutic options to improve QOL. The incorporation of QOL as both primary and secondary end points is crucial because QOL can have prognostic value, and improvement of QOL may in turn increase overall survival. As such, QOL should be included as a secondary outcome measure and also be tested as a primary outcome measure in intervention studies designed to improve the lives of brain tumor patients.
Clearly, more work is needed in the field of QOL in brain tumor patients. National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Journal List Neuro Oncol v.
QOL in Brain Tumor Patients: Current Knowledge
Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer. Address correspondence to Susan M.
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Received Jul 23; Accepted Oct This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract Quality of life is an important area of clinical neurooncology that is increasingly relevant as survivorship increases and as patients experience potential morbidities associated with new therapies.
Current Knowledge The overall symptom burden and disability for glioma patients are significant, especially in those with high-grade or recurrent disease. Specific Symptoms Research addressing specific symptoms that affect QOL has focused on fatigue, sleep, pain, seizures, mood disturbance, and cognitive function.
Survivorship The current literature on survivorship in brain tumor patients consists of small, mostly retrospective, noncontrolled studies. A Common Etiology to Symptoms: Symptom Clusters Although symptoms have been studied separately, they are often interrelated and may in some cases have a common etiology.
Quality of life in adults with brain tumors: Current knowledge and future directions
Symptom Management Despite the significant burden of symptoms that brain tumor patients face, few QOL interventions have been tested in brain tumor patients. Open in a separate window. Patient Factors Studies focusing on brain tumor patient comorbidities and demographics and their effects on QOL are largely lacking. Tumor Factors Tumor location and laterality has been shown to be correlated to several specific symptoms in some studies but not in others. Future Directions Several exciting avenues of research remain in the vastly unexplored area of QOL in brain tumor patients.
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