Treatment of cognitive deficits in brain tumour patients: Current status and future directions

Marijke Coomans, Sophie van der Linden, Karin Gehring, Martin J B Taphoorn*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleScientificpeer-review

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Abstract

Purpose of review:
Increased life expectancy in brain tumour patients had led to the need for strategies that preserve and improve cognitive functioning, as many patients suffer from cognitive deficits. The tumour itself, as well as antitumor treatment including surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy, supportive treatment and individual patient factors are associated with cognitive problems. Here, we review the recent literature on approaches that preserve and improve cognitive functioning, including pharmacological agents and rehabilitation programs.

Recent findings:
Minimizing cognitive dysfunction and improving cognitive functioning in brain tumour patients may be achieved both by preserving cognitive functioning during antitumor treatment, including techniques such as awake brain surgery, less invasive radiation therapies such as stereotactic radiotherapy and proton therapy, as well as with interventions including cognitive rehabilitation programmes. Novel rehabilitation programs including computer-based cognitive rehabilitation therapy (CRT) programmes that can be adjusted to the specific patient needs and can be administered at home are promising. Furthermore, personalized/precision medicine approaches to identify patients who are at risk for cognitive decline may facilitate effective treatment strategies in the future.

Summary:
Cognitive functioning has gained greater awareness in the neuro-oncological community, and methods to preserve and improve cognitive functioning have been explored. Rehabilitation programmes for brain tumour patients should be further developed and referred to in clinical practice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)540-547
JournalCurrent Opinion in Oncology
Volume31
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Keywords

  • DOUBLE-BLIND
  • ELOQUENT AREAS
  • HIGH-GRADE GLIOMA
  • NEUROCOGNITIVE FUNCTION
  • PHASE-III
  • PRIMARY CNS LYMPHOMA
  • QUALITY-OF-LIFE
  • RADIOTHERAPY
  • REHABILITATION
  • SURGERY
  • brain tumour
  • cognitive deficits
  • rehabilitation
  • treatment

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