Glial cells (astrocytes, oligodendrocytes and ependymal cells) form the supportive structure of the brain. A glioma is a tumour that has arisen from one of these cell lines.
Astrocytoma is the most common brain tumour occurring in adults. The WHO grading classification covers grades I (typically called a pilocytic astrocytoma) through to grade IV (glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), with activity grading from the benign inactive (grade I) to the aggressive (grade IV)
WHO grades I and II gliomas are commonly regarded as slow growing and have a favourable prognosis. WHO grades III and IV are increasingly aggressive, and may be associated with a poorer prognosis.
Surgery is often necessary to treat these tumours. Surgery may involve a biopsy, partial resection or total resection of the tumour. Surgeons at Neurosurgery Tasmania use state of the art technologies and modern surgical techniques to treat patients with these tumours. Subsequent to surgery, patients may need other therapies such as radiation and/or chemotherapies. Specialists in these areas are consulted to provide the best treatment options for each case.