Leptomeningeal metastasis from systemic cancer: Review and update on management.
Wang N, et al. Cancer. 2018.
Leptomeningeal metastasis is an uncommon and typically late complication of cancer with a poor prognosis and limited treatment options. Diagnosis is often challenging, with nonspecific presenting symptoms ranging from headache and confusion to focal neurologic deficits, such as cranial nerve palsies. Standard diagnostic evaluation involves a neurologic examination, magnetic resonance imaging of the brain and spine with gadolinium, and cytologic evaluation of the cerebral spinal fluid. Therapy entails a multimodal approach focused on palliation with surgery, radiation, and/or chemotherapy, which may be administered systemically or directly into the cerebral spinal fluid. Limited trial data exist to guide treatment, and current regimens are based primarily on expert opinion. Although newer targeted and immunotherapeutic agents are under investigation and have shown promise, an improved understanding of the biology of leptomeningeal metastasis and treatment resistance as well as additional randomized controlled studies are needed to guide the optimal treatment of this devastating disease. Cancer 2018;124:21-35.
© 2017 American Cancer Society.