Author: Dr Graham Grove, 2016

Gliomas are brain tumours that are composed of cells that appear to be a proliferation of glial cells (that is, astrocytes, ependymal cells and oligodendrocytes). They are the most common type of primary brain tumour. These tumours are not malignant in the sense that they do not metastasize outside of the central nervous system, however as they grow and invade they can cause significant disability depending upon what parts of the brain they are damaging; ultimately they often prove fatal. In the palliative care context the high-grade gliomas such as glioblastomas are the usual gliomas seen

Cell Type Name Grade
Astrocytoic cells Pilocytic astrocytoma I
Diffuse astrocytoma II
Anaplastic astrocytoma III
Glioblastoma IV
Oligodendroglial cells Oligodendroglioma II
Anaplastic oligodendroglioma III
Glioblastoma with oligodendroglioma component IV
Ependymal cells Subependymoma and myxopapillary ependymoma I
Ependymoma II
Anaplastic ependymoma III

The prognosis is quite variable depending on tumour type. The distinction between grades is particularly helpful in informing prognosis with the grade IV tumours having a particularly poor prognosis. In general, oligodendrocytic tumours have a better long-term prognosis than the astrocytic tumours of the same grade. The prognosis of ependymal cell tumours is particularly related to the location of the tumour.

  • glioma.txt
  • Last modified: 2019/07/09 23:24
  • by Graham Grove